By EARL WATT
• Daily Leader
Whatever the reason, Seward has its worst winning percentage at the Hutchinson Sports Arena.
In the history of Saints basketball, the Arena has been the most difficult venue.
Saturday was no different.
Seward dropped the Jayhawk West opener, 76-69 to the Blue Dragons.
Seward struggled from the field, only hitting 36 percent of its shots while the Blue Dragons were able to connect on 43 percent.
Seward’s perimeter game was shut down. Seward only made four three- pointers out of 13 attempts in the first half and missed all eight attempts in the second.
The two teams battled to a 38-38 halftime tie, but the Saints offense slowed in the second half while the Blue Dragons maintained.
Seward forced 25 Blue Dragon turnovers, but the Saints shooting woes did not allow Seward to take full advantage.
Antonio Smith led Seward with 17 points and five steals. Latiq Agard added 16, and Drew Jones scored 13. Jon Tassin had nine.
The loss was the second consecutive for Seward after ending the first semester with a loss to the College of Southern Idaho.
Seward is ranked No. 15 with a 13-2 record.
Seward will return home Wednesday to host Barton County in a key Jayhawk West match-up. The Cougars knocked off Cloud County who is projected to finish second in the Jayhawk West.
The Saints will enjoy a three-game home stand starting with Barton Wednesday, Colby Saturday and Pratt next week.