Back-to-back conference titles for Lady Cavaliers
February 25, 2013
OVERLAND PARK, Kan. -- The Johnson County women’s basketball team are conference champions....AGAIN! The Lady Cavaliers captured its second consecutive East Jayhawk Conference title with their 51-45 home win over Saturday afternoon at the JCCC Gymnasium. It the fourth conference title in the program’s history, but the first time any team has won them back-to-back.
“I’ve always said that a regular season conference title is the crown jewel in college basketball,” coach Ben Conrad said following his team’s celebration. “I couldn’t be prouder of our players and coaches, to basically start from scratch with our roster and clinch for a share of another conference title.”
While the outcome of the game was historic, the actual execution to get this milestone victory was not one of the Lady Cavaliers best efforts this season.
Johnson County previously defeated Neosho County by 33 points on the Lady Panthers home floor, but Saturday afternoon, Neosho County gave everything they could handle, and with nearly four minutes?left to play, Neosho County a four point lead on Johnson County.
“Neosho was very good defensively,” said Conrad. “They did a tremendous job of challenging all our shots. I thought they outplayed us and probably deserved to win the game. They also had some kids who typically don’t shoot it well, make shots. This was also our fifth game in 10 days, and it really showed. When we don’t get good practices in, we struggle.”
Three players finished in double figures scoring, led by sophomore DaShawn Harden. The former KC Metro player of the Year finished with 15 points, four rebounds and four steals.
She was joined in double figures by freshman guard Timeka O’Neal and Juanita Robinson. O’Neal poured in 10 points and contributed six rebounds, two assists and two steals. Robinson recorded her first double-double of the season, finishing with 10 points and 10 boards. She also had five assists and two steals.
JCCC also got solid efforts from freshmen Kariel Hutt and Taylor McDowell. Hutt led JCCC with 11 rebounds, and was 3-of-4 at the line. McDowell came in off the bench to know down two key 3-pointers.
The victory also extended JCCC home court winning streak to 36 straight games.