COFFEYVILLE, Kan. — Riding a five-game winning streak, Northeastern A&M’s Lady Norse square off against Fort Scott (Kan.) Community College today at 3 p.m. in the opening round of the Jayhawk Shoot-Out on the campus of Coffeyville Community College.
After posting a 77-73 victory over Northern Oklahoma College-Enid Thursday in the NEO Fieldhouse, coach Jim Rowland’s Lady Norse enter the three-day Shoot-Out with an 11-2 overall record.
Ranked 30th in the weekly National Junior College Athletic Association Division I poll, the Lady Norse enter the Shoot-Out as the at-large team, joining 19 teams from the Kansas Jayhawk Conference.
Three other teams also appear in the NJCAA rankings.
Seward County Community College of Liberal, Kan., is 14th with a 7-1 record while Hutchinson, Kan., is rated 16th with an 8-0 mark.
Highland (Kan.) Community College is ranked 10th in the NJCAA D-II poll with a 7-2 record.
All but the two Coffeyville Lady Ravens games will be played in the Nellis Hall east gym.
“This is a great venue for our kids to get some exposure in front of some four-year D-1 coaches,” Rowland said. “Even though we have to play at some unusual times, it’s still a good experience for us.”
Coach Stasha Richards’ Fort Scott Lady Greyhounds (6-4) enter the Shoot-Out with a three-game winning streak. The Lady Hounds defeated Northern Oklahoma-Tonkawa 81-56 Wednesday in Fort Scott.
“Fort Scott has two players that can really shoot the basketball from anywhere on the floor,” Rowland said. “They both do a good job of getting open for good looks at the basket.
“We want to go over to Coffeyville and play solid at both ends of the court,” Rowland said. “We’ve got to make them work hard for every shot they get and not let them beat us on the offensive boards.”
With only three sophomores, the Greyhounds will start veteran Kylie Shepard and freshmen Valencia Kelly and Shadara Hampton in the backcourt.
Shepard (5-5 of Uniontown, Kan.) has a 6.2 scoring average with 17 assists and eight steals.
Kelly (5-6 of Brunswick, Ga.) is averaging 15.4 points with 23 assists and 30 steals.
Hampton (5-6 of Houston, Texas) is scoring 6.9 points with 19 assists and 27 steals.
Comprising the Lady Norse guard spots are freshman Carla McKinney and sophomores Megan Fraley and Kali Bassett.
McKinney (5-4 of Desoto, Texas) is averaging 2.8 points with 19 assists and 13 steals.
Fraley (5-7 of Adair) leads the Lady Norse with 60 assists and 20 steals while averaging 15.1 points per game.
Bassett (5-8 of Grove) has a 8.8 scoring mark with 19 assists and eight steals.
“In our game with Enid, I thought our half-court defense was solid,” Rowland said. “But, as soon as the shot went up, our transition defense was terrible.
“If we don’t give up a lot of easy transition baskets, we should be okay against Fort Scott,” Rowland said. “We’ve got to block out and control the boards.”
Sophomore Leondra Doomes-Stephens and freshman Monet Fernandes start in the middle of the Lady Hounds offense.
Doomes-Stephens (5-10 of Charlotte, N.C.) is the Lady Hounds’ leader both in scoring with a 20.3 mark and in rebounding with a 7.7 average. She also leads the team with 57 steals.
Fernandes (5-11 also of Charlotte, N.C.) averages 8.1 points and 6.1 rebounds per game.
Sophomores Nolisha Markham and Skye Rees will start inside for the Lady Norse.
Markham (5-10 of Tulsa) is averaging 9.4 points and 6.2 rebounds per game.
Rees (6-2 of Melbourne, Australia) leads the Lady Norse with a 17.4 scoring average while grabbing 5.1 rebounds per contest.
A three-day Shoot-Out pass is $22 per person while all-day passes are $10 for adults and $4 for students.
The Lady Norse conclude the Shoot-Out on Sunday with a 9 a.m. contest against Highland (Kan.) Community College.