NORTH PLATTE, Nebraska — The Cloud County Community College women's basketball team picked off win No. 1 on the season Sunday, rolling to an 86-48, wire-to-wire road win over North Platte Community College.
"I thought it was an all-around good effort for us and a good way to start out season," said Cloud County head coach, Brett Erkenbrack. "We got everybody involved and everybody gave us good, solid production. I was encouraged by it and thought the game went about as well as we could have hoped."
Cloud County (1-0) owned the paint on both ends of the floor in its rout of the Lady Knights (0-1) as the T-Birds finished with a 56-33 rebounding advantage and double-double performances by forwards Scout Frame and Cassidy Haufler.
Frame led all Cloud County players with 16 points while adding 10 rebounds to complete her double-double. The sophomore out of Kinsley, Kansas posted a team-high eight double-doubles a season ago.
Haufler, a sophomore transfer out of Centralia, followed close behind with 11 points and a team-high 14 rebounds in her first collegiate game.
"We were able to get out in transition and get a lot of comfortable shots in the second half and that all started because we dominated the boards," Erkenbrack said. "I thought Cassidy was very good, she's going to be a good player for us this season, and Scout played really well that second half."
Freshman guard Kamryn Collins paced the backcourt for Cloud County on Sunday as she was the third T-Bird in double-figures with 14 points on 6-of-9 shooting.
Fellow freshman guards Lydia Ostenson and Emmiley Hendrixson each added nine points and freshman forward Faith Martin chipped in eight points in her nine minutes to round out Cloud County's top scorers.
After carrying a 34-23 lead into halftime, the T-Birds put the game away over the final 20 minutes as they outscored the Lady Knights 27-13 in the third quarter and 25-12 in the fourth.
Cloud County shot 48 percent (36-of-75) for the game — 51 percent (21-of-41) during its 52-point effort in the second half— and committed just four of its 15 turnovers over the final two quarters.
"I thought our second-half offense was very good, especially with us playing all 12 people a lot of minutes," Erkenbrack said. "We were out of sync a little bit in the first half against North Platte's 3-2 zone. It always takes a little bit of time early in the season to get comfortable playing against a zone so itt just took us a while to settle down and figure out where our shots were going to come from."
Defensively, the T-Birds were stifling in their half-court, man-to-man as North Platte finished just 21-of-68 (31 percent) from the field, including a dreadful 1-of-14 (7 percent) from 3-point range in the second half.
"I didn't think we did a very good job covering up the 3-point line in the first half, but then we played with a little more energy in the second half. We were getting our hands on the ball more, did a nice job of communicating and challenging the shot more," Erkenbrack said. "And then the big key to holding someone to a low shooting percentage is not allowing second-chance shots."
Cloud County will look to build off its dominating second-half effort on Tuesday when it hosts Kansas Wesleyan University JV in the home opener. Tip-off is scheduled for 6 p.m. inside Arley Bryant Gymnasium.
"Usually, between the first game and second game of the season we see a significant jump in our play. But one of the things I was most proud of (Sunday) was we saw that significant jump in our level of play between the first and second half," Erkenbrack said. "I want us to start Tuesday the way we ended tonight and go from there."