by DOMINICK PUENTE//Staff Writer
With conference play beginning, the South Plains College women’s basketball team has accumulated key victories against tough opponents.
With an important victory against the number 11-ranked Midland College Lady Chaparrals, the Lady Texans began conference play 1-0 in the Western Junior College Athletic Conference.
SPC posted a nail-biting 69-61 victory against Midland College on Nov. 30 in Midland. Going into the game as the underdog, the Lady Texans were able to force turnovers and capitalize with easy baskets.
Yanina Inkina finished with a game-high 15 points to lead the Lady Texans’ offensive attack.
Defense was the main factor in the first half of the game. SPC and Midland College were tied at 13-13 after the first quarter.
Midland College was able to stall the Lady Texans’ offense in the second quarter, allowing only nine points and forcing a lead change going into halftime.
Trailing the Lady Chaparrals, 27-22, the Lady Texans responded with important defensive stops down the stretch in the second half.
The SPC offense took an early third-quarter lead by scoring 22 points and allowing only 11 points on defense. Heading into the final stretch, the Lady Texans were able to gain a 44-38 lead before the fourth quarter began.
Both offenses began to work efficiently. However, the Lady Texans were able to work the clock down in their favor and limit late turnovers.
Outscoring the Lady Chaparrals, SPC finished the fourth quarter with 25 points and prevented a last-minute comeback to upset Midland College and gain the victory.
Elizabeth Cera finished the game with 13 points for the Lady Texans and showcased her 3-point shooting skills. Jasauen Beard and Dabrasia Baty both finished with 10 points each.
The Lady Texans have become red hot, stringing together a nine-game winning streak and improving to 9-1 overall.
SPC began the winning streak with a 124-31 victory against College of Southwest on Nov. 10 at Texan Dome.
Sophomore guard Elizabeth Cera, a Levelland native, managed to break her own record from last season of 12 3-pointers, hitting 14 3-points to lead the Lady Texans offensive attack.
Cera’s previous record was set Feb. 1, 2016 against conference rival Frank Philips. The record was previously held by Sheryl Swoopes.
Cera finished with a game-high of 49 points, while Felicia Jackson finished the game with 11 points, nine assists and six rebounds.
Joneva Huey managed to shoot 2-2 from the three-point line and worked her way around the paint to finish the game with 10 points.
The Lady Texans’ defense proved their strength against College of the Southwest’s offense, allowing only 31 points in the game.
SPC followed that impressive victory against the College of Southwest with an 81-71 victory against Dallas Diesel on Nov. 11 at Texan Dome.
Both teams exchanged baskets throughout the first quarter, with the Lady Texans outscoring Dallas Diesel, 21-20.
The second and third quarter became a back-and-forth battle. However, the Lady Texans stayed in the lead.
The fourth quarter proved to be the important quarter for the Lady Texans, as they outscored Dallas Diesel significantly for a 10-point lead.
Jasauen Beard, Yanina Inkina and Cera finished the game as the Lady Texan’s top three scorers.
With two impressive offensive performances, the Lady Texans continued their winning streak by defeating Phoenix College, 82-54, at home on Nov. 12.
Defense proved to be key for SPC once more. The Lady Texans defense held Phoenix College to 18 of 51field goals, while forcing 24 turnovers.SPC found early momentum in the first quarter offensively, outscoring Phoenix College, 29-12.
Inkina led SPC with 21 points and five rebounds. Brittany Smith was able to maneuver through the Phoenix defense and score 15 points for the Lady Texans.
With confidence from the three previous games, the Lady Texans defeated West Texas Drive 74-53, making up for their first loss against West Texas Drive in the beginning of the season.
Cera proved to be the offensive threat for the Lady Texans, finishing with 19 points.
Both teams exchanged points throughout the first quarter until the Lady Texans’ defense managed to limit West Texas Drive’s point production in the second quarter and in the second half.
Dabrasia Baty and Beard both finished the game with 10 points each while also being important contributors to the SPC defense.
The Lady Texans forced 26 turnovers on defense to ensure the victory.
With momentum on their side coming off of dominant wins, the Lady Texans gained two victories in the Hill Classic on Nov. 18- Nov. 19.
The Lady Texans began play with a challenging 49-37 victory against Cisco College.
SPC’s defense proved to be the main factor in the victory against over Cisco, as points were hard to come by for the Lady Texans.
Cera, Beard and Inkina finished as the team’s top three shooters with nine points each.
To cap off the trip, the Lady Texans pulled out a nail-biting victory against Hill College, 82-79.
SPC began the game by scoring points early and limiting the production of the Hill offense
Throughout the second and third quarters, both teams began to exchange points on possessions; However, SPC continued to find ways to stay on top on with their defense.
As the game was coming to an end, Hill College began to find ways to get through the Lady Texans defense.
Beard led the Lady Texan offense with 28 points and proved to be one of the difference makers in the victory.
Cera finished the game with 11 points, while Inkina finished the game with 10 points.