Just hours before tip-off Wednesday night, the Seward County Community College women’s basketball team learned they had moved up two more spots in the latest National Junior College Athletic Association Top 25 poll to No. 3 in the nation. Wednesday night the Lady Saints took care of business on the court as well, with a 78-68 Jayhawk West Conference victory over a very competitive Butler Community College (15-4, 3-2) team that went down fighting in the Green House. Seward County did all the little things right including holding Butler to 35 percent shooting in the second-half, moving their undefeated overall record to 18-0 this season. Seward County also remains perfect in the Jayhawk West with a 4-0 conference record, and joins No. 1 South Plains College (18-0) and No. 9 Western Nebraska C.C. (16-0) as the only unbeaten teams in the country.

The Lady Saints trailed during the opening five minutes of the game, and were behind 21-15 with 10:17 remaining in the first-half. Seward County used a 21-6 run over the next eight minutes, being led by freshman Audra Binford, who tallied nine points including two jump-shots and a three-point bucket.

Seward County shot 49 percent from the field in the opening period, and shot 50 percent from behind the three-point arc (3-for-6).

In the second-half, Butler never went away and was able to keep the game within five points during most of the half. The Lady Grizzlies cut the Lady Saints lead to just one-point (55-54) at the 10:56 mark, before Seward County went on a 23-10 run over the next ten minutes to put away the Lady Grizzlies at the Green House. With the victory, Seward County improves to 211-3 at home since 1992.

The Lady Saints were led by a list of players including sophomore guard Taushelle Rushing, who led the team with 20 points (7-of-13 shooting) and posted five rebounds and two assists. Seward County was also led by Binford (15 points, five rebounds), Tegan Cunningham (15 points and nine rebounds), Chontaye Walter (11 points and five assists) and Chelsea Blackshear (10 points, seven assists and four steals).

The top player for Butler was without a doubt guard Danae Stuckey, who posted game highs in scoring (23 points) and rebounding (14). Stuckey was a perfect 8-for-8 from the free-throw line, hit 3-of-3 from long range and collected five assists and three steals. Lakeshia Levi (15 points and nine rebounds), Megan Cherry (14 points and six rebounds) and Brittany Fernandez (10 points and 10 rebounds) all scored in double-figures for Butler C.C.

The Lady Saints will host a national showdown this Saturday, Jan. 20 against No. 4 ranked Cloud County Community College (13-1, 1-1) at 6 p.m. at the Green House.