Kizart records career-high seven steals, T-Birds blow out Barton in 81-40 road win

Sophomore point guard Chelcie Kizart
Sophomore point guard Chelcie Kizart

GREAT BEND, Kansas — The Cloud County Community College women's basketball team insured it would finish no worse than sixth place in the KJCCC standings in grand fashion Saturday night, drubbing the seventh-place Barton Community College Cougars, 81-40.

The blowout was a resounding bounce-back performance by the T-Birds (18-8 overall, 15-8 KJCCC) after Wednesday's road loss to Butler Community College where they were limited to five points in the final quarter.

"Coming off of that really devastating loss to Butler where we felt like we gave that game away, this was critical for us," said Cloud County head coach, Brett Erkenbrack. "This was a big game for Barton, with (the Cougars) mathematically able to catch us in the standings. I anticipated a tough ballgame, but we played well enough to control the thing…After the first 4-5 minutes, I thought we were about as good as we've been all year on both ends."

After building a solid 21-14 lead in the first quarter, Cloud County buried Barton over the next 20 minutes with a 42-14 scoring onslaught.

In the driver seat was sophomore point guard Chelcie Kizart as she scored a team-high 17 points, grabbed five rebounds, passed out two assists and had a career-high seven steals while playing turnover free basketball.

"Chelcie was fantastic on both ends of the floor," Erkenbrack said. "She played with energy and was really disruptive on defense."

While Kizart wreaked havoc in passing lanes, the rest of the Cloud County defense was suffocating Barton (14-13 overall, 11-12 KJCCC) offense, limiting the Lady Cougars to 25 percent shooting for the game, including a 2-for-15 (13 percent) mark from 3-point distance.

Offensively, the T-Birds punished Barton for its 20 giveaways as they finished with a 28-7 advantage in points off turnovers. They also owned a 36-16 advantage in points in the paint and 16-0 lead in fastbreak points.

Cloud County shot 35-for-65 (54 percent) from the floor on the night.

Joining Kizart in double-figures for Cloud County was sophomores Erin Alexander, Kaley Broeckelman and Simone Walker.

Alexander, still making her way back to 100 percent from a lower body injury, scored 15 points and tallied three blocks, while Brockelman chipped in 11 points and Walker went for 10 points and a game-high seven rebounds.

Freshman guard Kelsi Mueller scored eight points, while the trio of Shannon Owens, Jenna Clasen and Kennedy Gay each finished with six points off the bench.

Up next for Cloud County will be a 6 p.m. home game this Wednesday against Cowley College (20-7 overall, 16-7 KJCCC), which sits fifth in the KJCCC standings one game ahead of the T-Birds with three regular season games remaining.