Mueller's career-high 20 points pace T-Birds in 77-59 win over Allen County

Mueller's career-high 20 points pace T-Birds in 77-59 win over Allen County

CONCORDIA, Kansas —  In terms of size and stature, freshman guard Kelsi Mueller is the smallest player on the Cloud County Community College women's basketball team standing at five-feet, two-inches tall.

The native of Moscow, Kansas played big Wednesday.

Mueller guided the T-Birds to a 77-59 home victory over Allen County Community College with a career-high 20 points on an economical 8-of-15 shooting. She added three assists, a pair of steals, and played turnover free basketball.

"I thought Kelsi Mueller was great on both ends of the floor all night," said Cloud County head coach, Brett Erkenbrack. "She was getting her hands on the ball, hitting some big 3-pointers, she made some real nice passes in the half court, and in transition she was critical for us."

Cloud County (11-4 overall, 8-4 Kansas Jayhawk Community College Conference) got off to a rocky start, falling behind 23-16 after the first quarter to a Red Devils squad (5-11 overall, 4-8 KJCCC) that has struggled to put up points much of this season.

 "I thought our lack of aggressiveness on the defensive end allowed (Red Devils) to shoot some comfortable thoughts and in their offense that first quarter," Erkenbrack said. "To their credit, they came in here to win and we had to dig ourselves out of that first-quarter hole."

Mueller helped lead that charge as she drilled a pair of 3-pointers in what was a 20-8 second quarter scoring advantage for Cloud County to take a 36-31 lead into the locker rooms.

Inside, sophomore forward Erin Alexander quietly posted nine points, five rebounds and five blocked shots in the first half to aid in the turnaround. She flirted with a triple-double as she finished the night with 16 points, 10 rebounds and seven blocks.

"We take her for granted some times and all the things she does for us," said Erkenbrack, referring to First-Team All-KJCCC forward. "She had a good night. She was active, hit a couple of nice shots, and was real solid."

The T-Birds' kept the momentum rolling in the second half, outscoring Allen County 21-10 in the third quarter to go up 16 entering the fourth.

Allen County would inch back within nine at 57-48 with 8:29 remaining, but the bench duo of forwards Kennedy Gay and Amaris Jones helped salt the game away for the T-Birds.

Gay scored four of her six points in the fourth quarter, while Jones had an active final 5:58 as she scored five points, dished out two assists, and tallied a rebound and a steal in addition to her smothering on-ball defense.

"I thought Amaris was just fantastic in the fourth quarter," Erkenbrack said. "She made about four plays on both ends and kind of put the game away for us there late."

Joining Mueller and Alexander in double-figures for Cloud County on Wednesday were sophomores Simone Walker and Kaley Broeckelman with 11 points apiece. Broeckelman nearly had a double-double as she added eight rebounds on the evening, as well.

Up next for Cloud County will be a road trip to take on Independence Community College at 4 p.m. on Saturday.