Broncbuster men blast Lamar, 102-74

GCCC Sports Information Services
Garden City Community College's Tone Hunter, left, drives to the basket for two points past Lamar's Tim Montgomery Wednesday at Perryman Athletic Complex. Hunter scored 30 points in the game. The Broncbusters won the game, 102-74, and host Friends University's junior varsity at 7 p.m. on Friday.

Hunter leads GCCC with 30 points

Tone Hunter arrived in Garden City from a basketball hotbed. Playing high school ball in Las Vegas, the freshman point guard saw his fair share of pressure moments. That allowed him to perfect his craft, which was on full display Wednesday night.

Hunter poured in 30 points, dished out seven assists, and pulled down six boards, Mohamed Diarra added 20 points and nine rebounds, and Garden City raced past Lamar, 102-74 at Conestoga Arena. With the win, the Broncbusters improved to 2-0 while scoring 100 or more points in back-to-back games for the first time since Nov. 5 and Nov. 12, 2016.

"Tone is a super-talented player," Head Coach, Bill Morosco explained. "You could argue that he's our most valuable player. He really gets our engine going, and when he's on, so are we."

Garden City shot 48 percent from the floor, went 10-of-21 from deep and finished 30-of-36 at the line. They tallied 19 assists on 31 made baskets and held a potent Lamar offense to just 36 percent shooting on 20-of-56 from the field.

"We couldn't ask for a better home crowd," Morosco said afterwards. "The student section was amazing tonight. You could tell that this was a big-time environment, and our guys fed off it."

The Broncbusters, which improved to 2-0 for the first time since 2019, never trailed. Diarra drilled three triples in the first five minutes, Heru Bligen made back-to-back layups, and Josh Nwankwo canned a long ball to cap of a 12-0 run that put Garden City up, 21-7 with 14:59 to play in the first half.

"I know we shot well, but I was disappointed with how we finished in the paint," Morosco added. "We had a couple of great looks that we didn't convert. I think at times, we settled for way too many outside shots."

Still, Garden City outscored Lamar 36-26 below the dotted line, and were plus-12 from downtown. They also finished the half strong, utilizing a 26-9 surge capped by Zac Taylor's triple from the left wing at the buzzer that had the home team up, 60-32 at the intermission.

"There was a lot of good tonight, but there is a lot to cleanup," Morosco stated. "We had 15 turnovers, and I would say that most of them were unforced. So, at times, we lost focus. Those are things that we definitely need to clean up."

In the second half, Garden City's lead swelled to as many as 32 following Bligen's steal and dish to Diarra, whose thunderous transition throwdown brought the crowd to its feet and put the Broncbusters up, 81-49 with 11:01 remaining.

"We will be playing National Championship contending teams' night in and night out in the Jayhawk," Morosco said. "So, we can't make the same mistakes that we've made in the first two games."

Lamar made things somewhat interesting midway through the second half when they trimmed the lead to 17. But Marko Dosen responded with a 3-pointer, and Hunter swished back-to-back triples to push the advantage back to 22.

Hunter finished 11-of-19 from the floor in 32 minutes for Garden City. Dosen scored 18 points in 29 minutes, and Bligen had 12 points, five rebounds, two assists, and two steals.

Kris Cool led all scorers with 31 points for the Lopes, which shot just 6-of-25 from beyond the arc. Kevon Wiggins chipped in 18.

Lamar  32; 42; - 74

Garden City  60; 42; - 102

Garden City will host Friends University’s junior varsity at 7 p.m. on Friday.