After passing a pair of tests last weekend in Florida at the Report Classic to move to 5-0 on the year, the #14 Seward County Lady Saints kept their straight a’s going this weekend in the Billy’s/Days Inn Classic in the Greenhouse as they throttled South Plains 74-44 Friday night and followed that up with a 71-50 win over Frank Phillips on Saturday night to hit the Thanksgiving break at a perfect 7-0.

In a much anticipated matchup with the Lady Texans of South Plains on Friday, Seward was the aggressors, jumping out to a quick 6-0 lead on a pair of Ashlynn Knoll buckets and another from Ricquia Jones and held South Plains without a field goal until the 13:30 mark of the half when the score was 8-4 Seward. The next six minutes were absolutely dominated by the Lady Saints as they went on a 17-0 run, capped by a Charmaine Burns to Hanna Bognar hookup to make it 25-4 Seward County to the dismay of a shocked South Plains bunch. The Lady Saints stretched their lead to 29-6 before the Lady Texans made their second field goal of the half with just 3:00 remaining in the period and carried a big 35-16 lead into the half time break. Seward held South Plains to just 4 first half field goals and 20% shooting and were led on their half of the floor by Knoll who went into the locker room with 14 points of her own.
The Lady Saints wasted no time adding to their lead out of the break as Mariah Lee got to work down low for a hoop and Anete Kirsteine drove and scored and then hit a three pointer on the next Seward possession to make it 42-16 in favor of the home team. Seward’s lead hit 30 when Bognar kicked it out to Mattie Yanke who drained a three from the corner and the route was on. The Lady Saints remained up big through the middle part of the half and saw their lead balloon to 39 after back to back buckets from Payton Flemming and Kelsey Blair made it 71-32 with 3:31 left in the contest. With the game already well out of reach, the Lady Texans did fight back and get it to a 30 point game in the closing minutes but the Lady Saints finished it off with a 74-44 win to the delight of a big Greenhouse crowd.
Seward had four players finish in double figures, led by Knoll’s 16 and Lee’s 14 points and 8 rebounds. Jones pitched in 12 to go along with her 4 steals and Kirsteine had 10 for the Lady Saints. Yanke hit 3 of 5 from downtown and finished with 9 points while LaQuecia Parker had 6 points and 4 assists for Seward.
Following a 30 points blowout against South Plains on Friday night, the Lady Saints were expected to have a much easier time with their Saturday night opponent Frank Phillips, but as they found out, the Lady Plainsmen from Borger had much different ideas. Things didn’t start well for Seward as they forgot which direction they were going off of the opening tip and the five Lady Saint starters were promptly given a rest on the bench :30 into things. The Lady Saints fell behind 3-0 early on but a 15-0 run spurred by three pointers from Yanke and Flemming pushed them on top 15-3 with just under 12 minutes to go in the half. A lackluster middle portion of the first half for the Lady Saints saw Frank Phillips slowly climb back in and after a corner three from the Lady Plainsmen it was a one possession game with 6:24 to go in the period. A pair of free throws from Lee moments later put the Lady Saints up 23-19 until another long ball for Frank Phillips fell to make it a one point game. Two Thomas to Knoll connections put the Lady Saints up five with under two minutes remaining, but a Frank Phillips hoop before the half made it a 29-26 game as the teams went to the break. Offensively the lines were not good for either team at the half as Seward shot 32% in the first 20 minutes of action while Frank Phillips was only able to connect on 24% of their field goal attempts.
As the second half began, it started to look a little more and more like Lady Saints basketball that Seward fans are accustomed to. The Lady Saints tacked onto their lead early with a pair of buckets and a Flemming jumper followed by a three pointer from Yanke quickly made it an 11 point game in favor of the Lady Saints. Up 41-30 with 14:32 remaining on the clock Seward again put the ball in the hands of their freshman forward Flemming who scored on back to back trips down the court on feeds from Kirsteine to give Seward their largest lead of the game at 50-35. Seward held a double digit advantage through the middle of the half and slowly began to put the game away later on as Kirsteine buried a pair of three’s to make it 67-47 with 3:51 left and the Lady Saints salted things away late before coming away with a 71-50 win.
The Seward offense picked up drastically in the second half as they hit 50% of their shots from the floor, 46% of their three point tries and 5 of 6 from the free throw line. Lee paced Seward with a 15 point, 10 rebound double-double while Flemming recorded her first double-double of her young Lady Saint career with 12 points and 10 rebounds of her own. Kirsteine hit on 3 of 4 three pointers and finished with 13 points and 4 assists and Yanke sparked Seward with a 10 point, 9 rebound effort in the win.
The Lady Saints keep their record at a spotless 7-0 on the season as the weekend comes to a close. However, their skills will be tested even more in the next two weeks as they play three of their next four games against teams ranked inside the NJCAA Top 15. Friday Seward travels to Garden City where they will battle 10th ranked Independence while Saturday they will return to the Perryman Center and tangle with #13 New Mexico JC, both games will be at 1:30.