LEVELLAND — Mikayla Kuehne scored a career-high 28 points while Christina Baker and Alexis Popham each chipped in 12 as the No.16 ranked South Plains College women's basketball team tamed the Phoenix College Lady Bears 86-53 on Saturday the Texan Dome.
"We were trying to use the extra pass to get open and it worked well today," Kuehne said. "We've been working on getting one extra pass and my teammates did that today and we were able to pick up another win. We knew we had to match their energy and we really tried to do that on the defensive end which really helped us out on offense."
South Plains jumped out to an 18-6 lead midway through the first quarter on a bank shot from Baker. A pair of free throws from Haleigh Hill put the Lady Texans up 21-9 with under a minute to play in the first quarter.
South Plains continued to pour it on in the second quarter as Kuehne opened the lead to 34-16 with a jumper with 5:48 to play before the break. Baker and Kuehne combined for 27 points at the midway point as South Plains led 47-24 at the half.
"We tried to stick to what we do and come out and have more energy than they did," Baker said. "Our energy always ends up getting extra possessions and we don't want to leave anything to chance. If we can get an extra steal and get the ball back to our offense and create opportunities, we believe we can have success. Defense wins games and we know we have to continue to make stops to get where we want to be."
South Plains forced 29 turnovers in the contest as they extended their lead to 26 thanks to a Kuehne' 3-ball with 5:38 to play in the third. Baker put the Lady Texans up 68-35 with a putback at the basket with 1:39 left. Leading 70-40 entering the fourth quarter, Hill pushed the lead to 74-42 with a jumper from 10-feet with under nine minutes to play.
Popham hit a jumper off the glass midway through the fourth as the Lady Texans would go on to pick up their eighth consecutive win dating back to Nov. 4.
"I think we're getting a lot better at sharing the basketball and doing a good job of finding the open shot," South Plains head coach Cayla Petree said. "We stress every day to play unselfishly and be very aggressive in the half court and attack the basket. We try to be really aggressive on defense which sometimes can hurt us if we take too many gambles, but right now we're focusing on being aggressive on both ends of the floor."
The Lady Texans will return to the hardwood on Sunday at 2 p.m. at the Texan Dome when they take on West Texas Drive.