T-Birds storm to a dominating 84-51 win over Garden City

Sophomore guard Kaley Broeckelman
Sophomore guard Kaley Broeckelman

CONCORDIA, Kansas — The Cloud County Community College women's basketball notched its third consecutive victory Saturday, and sealed at least a top-8 position in the Kansas Jayhawk Community College Conference, with a dominating 84-51 victory over Garden City Community College.

Saturday's blowout marked the second straight game the T-Birds (17-7 overall, 14-7 KJCCC) have won by 30 points — they defeated 67-31 on Wednesday night. But Saturday's performance against Garden City (8-17 overall, 6-15 KJCCC) felt a lot different as Cloud County received a number of great performances.

"Overall, I'm really happy with what we did, even more so on the offensive end than the defensive end," said Cloud County head coach, Brett Erkenbrack. "Garden City has a lot of weapons and is a better team than its record indicates. We played a little faster pace (Saturday) and we just weren't very good on Wednesday. Tonight was a lot better."

Perhaps no performance was more of a welcomed sight than the game-high 19 points poured in by sophomore guard Kaley Broeckelman, who has battled a shooting slump off and on during the spring semester.

Broeckelman, an All-KJCCC Honorable Mention player a season ago who is leading Cloud in scoring this season at 13.6 points per game, shot 6-of-14 and was 5-of-9 from deep, while adding five rebounds, three assists, two steals and committing just one turnover in her 27 minutes.

"Kaley got back on track and we needed to see that," Erkenbrack said. "She played with a lot more confidence (Saturday)."

Cloud County shot at a 45 percent clip from the field for the game and had all 10 players who saw the floor on Saturday score at least two points. Joining Broeckelman in double-figures for the T-Birds were sophomore forwards Simone Walker and Shannon Owens, each with 12 points apiece.

Walker, who was reinserted in the starting lineup Saturday, added a team-high nine rebounds, while Owens was a perfect 6-of-6 from the floor in just 10 minutes.

Freshman guard Kelsi Mueller chipped in 11 points and a team-high five assists, and fellow freshman Alexis Gifford had a very happy belated birthday performance as she scored a career-high 10 points and added a pair of assists and a pair of steals in 24 minutes.

"(Friday) was her birthday and her mom was here tonight, so that was great to see," Erkenbrack said. "She played a lot of good minutes for us and she had to with Jenna (Clasen) not 100 percent and Rebecca LaBerge out."

Cloud County will now turn its attention toward a tough road test on Wednesday against Butler Community College (18-6 overall, 15-6 KJCCC) in what will be a battle for fifth place in the KJCCC standings.

Tip-off is set for 5:30 p.m. on Wednesday.