Nov 14, 2013 - By Bruce Tippets, Sports EditorCWC led 32-25 at halftime but didn't shoot well in the second half.
A perfect opportunity to pull off an early-season women's junior college basketball upset by the Central Wyoming College Rustlers fell short Wednesday night in Scottsbluff, Neb.
The nationally ranked Western Nebraska Community College Lady Cougars came back in the second half for a 56-51 win over the Rustlers.
Western is ranked No. 15 in the National Junior College Athletic Association poll.
CWC dropped to 2-1 on the season.
"I thought we played very well," CWC coach Serol Stauffenberg said.
"Of course in a game you think you should have won, the loss is a bit tougher."
Western is 3-1 on the year.
"They are a solid team that deserves their ranking at this point in the season," Stauffenberg said.
CWC starts Region IX play on Thursday, Nov. 21, at Miles Community College.
"Sub-region games generally don't start until early December," Stauffenberg said. "Regardless, we need to spend the next practice days preparing for Miles City."
Western Nebraska 56, CWC 51
"Our styles of play are similar on the defensive end," Stauffenberg said. "That slowed down the scoring for both teams."
CWC built a 32-25 lead after the first 20 minutes.
"We shot the ball well and, probably most important, we fixed our rebounding issues that surfaced in our first two games," Stauffenberg said.
CWC won the rebounding war 45-42.
"We outrebounded a very hard-nosed team known for its rebounding," Stauffenberg said. "We also made a run right before halftime with some transition buckets."
The Rustlers struggled in the second half against Western's defense.
"We couldn't buy a bucket for about an eight-minute stretch," Stauffenberg said. "We had some turnovers coupled with some great looks on 3-pointers that didn't fall. We executed well, but the shots didn't fall."
CWC's Jolonna Sazue scored 17 points, and teammate Abbey Wilson finished with 13.
Western Nebraska 56
Central Wyoming College 51
WNCC 25 31 -- 56
CWC 32 19 -- 51
CWC -- Jessica Rabb 0 (1) 0-0 3, Abbey Wilson 2 (2) 3-3 13, Tina Hosea 0 (1) 0-0 3, McKenley Helstern 0 2-4 2, Kiara Skinner 2 (1) 0-0 7, Jolonna Sazue 2 (3) 4-4 17, Tonya Busse 2 2-4 5. Totals 8 ( 8) 11-15 51.
Western -- Laurin Rivera 3 1-2 7, Shalisa Moffit 2 1-5 5, Abi Lujun 2 4-5 8, Angela Vigil 1 0-0 2, Ashley Stevens 7 6-6 20. Totals 22 12-20 56.
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