Lady Saint Defense Too Much for T-Birds

Brock Kappelmann - January 25, 2018 6:46 am

LIBERAL, Kan. – The number one Jayhawk Conference offense had to utilize their defense to pick up a win against Cloud County, as the No. 12 Seward County women’s basketball team defeated the Thunderbirds 69-52 inside the Greenhouse on Wednesday night.

The Lady Saints (18-2, 14-2 KJCCC) started off the first quarter struggling, making just 29.4 percent (5 of 17) of their shots, but still held a 20-8 lead at the end of the first because of Mollie Mounsey. She finished the quarter making all four of her attempts, including both three’s, ending the quarter with 14 points. Seward forced the T-Birds into 11 first quarter turnovers, including eight steals.

Cloud came out in the second quarter firing, going on an 11-2 run over the first five and half minutes. The run cut the Seward lead to just three points before Mollie Mounsey connected on a three to push the lead back to six. The teams traded points the remainder of the quarter, with the Lady Saints taking a 33-22 lead into the break.

Seward shot just 32.4 percent (11 of 34) from the floor and 26.7 percent (4 of 15) from behind the arc, but their defense held Cloud to worse shooting, making just 7 of 26 attempts (26.9%). The Lady Saints used their defense to hold a 9-0 points off turnover advantage over the Thunderbirds at halftime.

The Thunderbirds came out of the gates hot, closing the lead to six with a 5-2 run, but a Vanessa Caro three ended their momentum and started a 9-3 run for the Lady Saints. Seward continued pushing, ending the quarter on a 7-2 run, extending their lead to 52-36.

The fourth quarter defense was amped up for the Lady Saints, allowing Cloud to connect on just 2 of their 13 shot attempts (15.4%). Fourteen free-throw attempts kept the Thunderbirds in contention, but the Lady Saints stifling defense was too much for Cloud to handle, turning the ball over eight times in the quarter, as Seward won 69-52.

The Lady Saints ended the game shooting 38.2 percent (26 of 68) from the floor and 32.3 percent (10 of 31) from behind the arc. They held the Thunderbirds to just 26.4 percent (14 of 53) from the field and 20 percent (4 of 20) from deep.

Seward forced the Thunderbirds into 30 turnovers, with 20 of them coming in the form of a steal. Silvia Veloso (7 steals) and Lexi Hernandez (5 steals) came away with career-highs in steals.

Offensively, Mounsey was the lone Lady Saints to reach double-figures, but it was her fourth straight 20-point performance, finishing with 27 points on 9 of 15 shooting.

Seward will play in their Homecoming game on Saturday (Jan. 27) when they host the Barton Cougars at 6 p.m. inside the Greenhouse. The game will be free for all fans thanks to our sponsor Pizza Hut. Free tickets can be picked up at any Liberal Pizza Hut location.

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Ian Applegate



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