Cloud County Women's Basketball Missing Offense in 69-60 Road Loss at Colby

Cloud County Women's Basketball Missing Offense in 69-60 Road Loss at Colby
Cloud County Women's Basketball Missing Offense in 69-60 Road Loss at Colby

Held to their second-lowest scoring total of the season, the Cloud County Community College women's basketball team would be upended by Colby Community College by a final score of 69-60 inside the Colby Events Center in Colby, Kansas on Saturday, January 15th.

The loss snaps a three-game winning streak for Cloud County who is now 9-8 overall and 5-6 in the Kansas Jayhawk Community College Conference. Colby improved to 6-10 overall with the win and 3-8 in the KJCCC to snap a three-game losing skid.

Neither team would get out to a good start offensively as both teams would shoot under 40 percent from the field in the opening 10 minutes. Both CCCC and Colby would split the opening four baskets of the game to keep things tied at 4-4 before seeing the Trojans take their first lead of the game at 6-4 with 6:10 left in the quarter. The score would remain within four for both teams as the T-Birds would go back up by a score of 8-6 before trailing again at 10-8 as Te Araroa Sopoaga would tie things up at 10-10 with 4:29 left in the first. Knocking down the first triple of the game would be freshman Paula Puzule to give CCCC the lead once again, but Colby would continue to keep things close as the largest lead of the game for the T-Birds would come at the end of the first period with the score 17-13 in favor of Cloud County.

Over three and a half minutes of action would be played in the second quarter before seeing any points scored as Colby would break through with a three and add a bucket in their next possession to go up 18-17 midway through the quarter. A Kennedy Becker free throw with 5:29 left before halftime would finally get Cloud County in the scoring column in the second quarter as the trend of the game staying within a possession would continue. The final 4:26 of the first half would feature five lead changes with the Trojans scoring the final six of the final 10 points including the final three points to go up by a score of 29-28 heading into the break.

Reclaiming the lead on a Kay Hauata Phillips jump shot to open the third quarter, Cloud County would concede the lead yet again before a Puzule triple would put break a 32-32 tie to put the T-Birds up 35-32. Colby responded with a three of their own to tie things again as part of an 8-2 run that would put the Trojans up 40-37 before pushing their lead out to six at 47-41. A four-point spurt from Freshman Makayla Twyman would cut into the Colby lead and bring the T-Birds back within three with just over a minute left in the third quarter, but a late three from the Trojans would make it 50-45 Colby heading to the fourth.

Twyman along with Sopoaga would provide the offense early in the fourth quarter to keep the T-Birds within striking distance, but Colby would have an answer for each Cloud County bucket and go up eight at 58-50 with 6:34 remaining. A two and a half minute scoring drought for the Trojans would allow CCCC to pull back within five as Phillips would score the next six T-Bird points to pull Cloud County within three. The 60-57 deficit for CCCC would be all the closer that the T-Birds could get however as only three points would be had by Cloud County down the stretch while getting outscored 12-3 in the final 3:05 of the game.

Shooting just 35.9 percent (23-of-64) from the field, Cloud County would see Colby hit on 26-of-72 (36.1 percent) of their shots while holding a 43-42 advantage in rebounds. The Trojans would also hold a 17-11 advantage in points off turnovers and turn 16 offensive rebounds into 15 second-chance points while holding Cloud County to just eight second-chance points.

Scoring a team-best 16 points would be Phillips who added seven rebounds and two blocks while Sopoaga would score 13 points and provide four assists to go with five rebounds. Rori Cox would grab a game-high 11 rebounds and play 38 total minutes of the game as CCCC would only have two players in double-figure scoring. 

What's Next?
A quick turnaround will see Cloud County play host to Northwest Kansas Technical College at 6 PM on Monday, January 17th. In the previous matchup this year out in Goodland, Kansas, CCCC earned an 80-55 victory over the Mavericks in their KJCCC opening game of the year.