Kansas City Kansas Community College's Lady Blue Devils followed up one of their most disappointing losses Wednesday with one of their best performances of the season, a near record 14 three-point field goals in an 88-67 win over North Central Missouri.
The win avenged KCKCC's season-opening 79-63 loss at North Central and boosted the Blue Devils' record to 7-3 heading into a home game against Saint Mary JV Monday at 7 p.m. The contest is KCKCC's last home game in December although the Blue Devils will play four on the road before the semester break.
Six Blue Devils had three-pointers as they came within two treys of the all-time record of 16 set against Sterling in the second game of the 2015 season. Aeriel Holiday was 5-of-8 and Brie Tauai 4-of-8 to lead the three-point assault while Ky'Ana French added two and Whitney Hazlett, Millie Shade and Brooklyn Wagler one each.
Tauai led the scoring with 26 points along with seven rebounds while Wagler added 18 points and eight rebounds, Holiday 17 points and four rebounds; and French 14 points and four rebounds.
The win was highlighted by the best ball-handling of the season – just five turnovers while 23 assists on 28 field goals. Point guards Valencia Scott and Kayla Horn led with five assists each while Wagler added four.
"I think it was evident from the very beginning that we had come into this game focused and ready to play after some soul-searching and readjusting our mindset after losing at Penn Valley," said KCKCC Coach Joe McKinstry. "I thought our execution, ball movement and unselfishness were all very big parts of tonight's game – 23 assists on 28 made baskets is great. I think it's the first time all year that everyone has scored. Hopefully, it will build some momentum going into our five remaining games before the holiday break."
The win came on the heels of a 64-63 loss at Penn Valley Tuesday night that avenged KCKCC's 80-76 home court win Nov. 12. Horn led the Blue Devil scoring with 11 points while Holliday and Tauai added 10 each, Shade 9 and French 8. Wagler, Tauai and Shade each had five rebounds but the Blue Devils were dominated on the boards 51-23 with 21 of the Scouts' rebounds off the offensive boards.
"This may be a game that we look back on and want to kick ourselves. We weren't prepared and it showed up," said McKinstry. "When you only shoot the ball 49 times to Penn Valley's 67 attempts and then give up 21 offensive rebounds and 18 more boards, it's pretty easy to see where they game was lost. And still we were within one or two possessions."
KCKCC's Ky'Ana French (24) finds a wide open Kyliea Jarrett for one of the Blue Devils' 23 assists on 28 field goals in an 88-67 win over North Central Missouri Wednesday. The win avenged a 97-63 loss at North Central in the season opener. (KCKCC Photo by Alan Hoskins)