Mar 31, 2024

🏀 WBB: National Championship Bound; Strong second half lifts Blue Dragons past EAC

Posted Mar 31, 2024 12:48 AM


CASPER, Wyo. — The Hutchinson Community College women's basketball team will play for a national championship on Monday night, following a 61-46 win over Eastern Arizona College in the semifinals on Saturday in the Ford Wyoming Center.

HutchCC is now 36-0 overall and will play in their fourth title game in program history, and the first since 2015.

The Blue Dragons and Gila Monsters found themselves deadlocked after the first quarter, 13-13, and at halftime, 24-24.

Hutchinson dominated the second half, outscoring Eastern Arizona (30-5), 37-22 in the second half.

Kiki Smith finished with a game-high 18 points, while Journey Armstead and Akaysha Muggeridge each had 10. Hailey Jackson had nine points and 10 rebounds and Monae Duffy finished with seven points and six rebounds.

Eastern Arizona was led by Elva Chavez with 13 points.

The Blue Dragons missed its first eight shot attempts of the game, but finished 22 of 53 (41.5 percent), including 4 of 21 (19 percent) from behind the arc and 13 of 22 (59 percent) from the foul line.

EAC was one of the top overall defenses in the entire country; fourth in scoring defense (49.3 points per game), first in field-goal percentage (30.9 percent) and third in 3-point defense (22.6 percent).

Eastern Arizona was held to 16 of 54 (29 percent) from the floor and 7 of 27 (25 percent) from behind the arc.

The Blue Dragons will await the winner of No. 2 Wabash Valley and No. 3 Northwest Florida State on Monday at 7 p.m. CT. 

Monday's game will be broadcasted live on Hutchinson's #1 Hit Music Station, My 93-1 with Sean Boston on the call from Casper. Pregame coverage starts at 6:45 p.m. CT.