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Dragons earn first-round bye in NJCAA tournament

Paris Junior College
The 2013-2014 Paris Junior College Dragons.

Paris Junior College will have to wait to learn its opponent in the second round of the National Junior College Athletic Association Men's National Basketball Championship in Hutchison, Kan.

That's because the Dragons earned a first-round bye by virtue of a No. 8 seed, according to information released on March 10 by the NJCAA.

Paris will play at 4:30 p.m. on Tue., March 18. The Dragons (26-7) will tip off against either South Plains College (27-5) or Cape Fear Community College (19-13). Those schools will play at noon on March 17. All games will be played at the Sports Arena in Hutchinson.

The Dragons enter the tournament having won the Region XIV Tournament with a 74-63 victory over Trinity Valley on March 8 in Tyler. Joe Haynes, a freshman guard from Detroit, Mich., led Paris scorers with 23 points, including a perfect 8-8 at the free-throw line and three from beyond the arc. Sophomore guard Trevon Seymore, from Waterbury, Conn., was second in scoring with 15 points off the bench. Seymore also hauled in seven rebounds. Sophomore forward Delvin Dickerson, from Houston, led all Dragons in rebounding with nine.

Paris last played in the national tournament in 2008. It will be the first trip to the tournament for head coach Chuck Taylor, who has been at Paris since 2010. Taylor was recognized as the Region XIV Coach of the Year.

South Plains, located in Levelland, will enter the tournament as the No. 9 seed, despite losing to Hill College 86-69 in the Region V Tournament on March 7 in Lubbock. Cape Fear, from Wilmington, N.C., is the No. 24 seed in the 24-team field, following its winning the Region X Tournament on March 8 with an 99-89 victory of Brunswick Community College in Bolivia, N.C.

The winner of Paris-South Plains/Cape Fear will advance to the quarterfinals on March 20. The semifinals will be played on March 21 and the title game is set for 7 p.m. on March 22.

Mark Haslett has served at KETR since 2013. Since then, the station's news operation has enjoyed an increase in listener engagement and audience metrics, as well recognition in the Texas AP Broadcasters awards.