Tegan Cunningham scored 31 points with 11 rebounds while leading the Seward County Community College women’s basketball team to an 83-71 victory over Butler Community College Thursday night at the Power Plant in El Dorado, Kan. The Lady Saints used an 18-2 run during a four minute span in the second half to secure their 16th straight victory over Butler since 2001. Seward County had four players score in double figures, including Cunningham’s fourth 30-plus scoring game of her career. Seward County improves to 12-6 overall and to 3-1 in the Jayhawk West. Butler remains winless in conference play (0-4) and drops to 5-13 overall.

The Lady Saints stretched their lead to as many as 13 points in the first half, but the game stayed close for the majority of the first period. After Butler tied the score at 9-9, Cunningham recorded Seward County’s next seven points on the following three possessions to take a 16-11 lead at the 13:30 mark.

Butler closed the opening half on a 6-0 run while Seward County grabbed a 42-35 lead at halftime. Cunningham scored 12 points with five rebounds in the first half. Butler used nine blocks in the opening half to trail by just seven points.

The Lady Grizzlies made a charge coming out of halftime with a 10-4 run, giving the Lady Saints a narrow 46-45 lead with 15:11 left in regulation.

Seward County took over the game in the second half as Cunningham scored 19 points and grabbed six rebounds.

The Lady Saints led 59-56 at the 9:59 mark in the second half when they capitalized on nine points from Cunningham to go on their 18-2 run. Seward County’s largest lead came with a 77-58 lead with 5:45 left in the game.

Seward County shot 41 percent in the game, marking the first time this season the Lady Saints have won a game where their opponent shot better from the field (Butler – 43 percent).
Freshman point guard Stephani Rhoten recorded seven of the Lady Saints’ nine assists, and she tallied 11 points and a career-high eight steals.

Seward County was also led by Audra Binford (10 points), LaNell Taylor (10 points) and Jennifer Noel (eight points, eight rebounds).

Butler finished the game with an 11-0 advantage in the blocks column, and was led by Tiffany Stokes (21 points, seven rebounds) and Lekeisha Levi (14 points, six rebounds).

The Lady Saints will continue play on the road this Sunday, Jan. 20, against No. 13 Cloud County Community College (15-2, 4-0) with a 1 p.m. tip off at Arley Bryant Gymnasium in Concordia, Kan.