Kesha Buckner and Nicole Salazar scored nine points apiece in the second half and the Dodge City Lady Conquistadors had one of their better shooting performances of the season to beat the Barton County Lady Cougars 71-68 Wednesday night at United Wireless Arena.
Buckner finished with 15 points in leading the Lady Conqs in scoring. The former Dodge City High star also had nine rebounds, three assists and three steals as the Lady Conqs earned their first Jayhawk West victory over an opponent besides Colby since the 2007 regular season finale against Garden City.
Salazar scored all of her points after intermission, including a 3-pointer with 2:34 left in regulation to put Dodge City (8-16, 2-8) up for good in the contest. The Lady Conqs were 13-of-26 in the second half to keep their lead for most of the stanza.
Kelli Tolar also scored in double figures for Dodge City with 14 points and also grabbed five rebounds.
Erin Copeland scored 15 points to lead Barton County (11 in the second half), while Blair Bloomfield and Taschell Phillips added 13 apiece and Taylor Mays 12 in the loss for Barton (12-11, 2-8).
The teams were even in first half shooting – both teams were 12-of-34 from the field – and hit four free throws apiece. The difference was the Lady Conqs were 6-of-12 from the 3-point range. The lead changed hands eight times and tied six before Dodge City was able to build a 34-29 lead at intermission.
Tolar scored nine points (3-of-5 from 3-point range) to lead the Lady Conqs in the first half, while Bloomfield was already in double-digits on the scorers sheet with 11 points. Dodge City outrebounded Barton 26-20.
The Lady Cougars hit the first basket of the second half before Dodge City scored eight of the next 10 to increase the lead to nine early in the second half.
One Barton run midway through the stanza cut the deficit to one, the Lady Conqs went on a six-point run with seven minutes left in regulation. An 11-2 run pushed the Lady Cougars ahead at 64-63 with 4:11 on the clock.
Page 2 of 2 - Salazar's three-pointer and two free throws by Brenna Briggs put Dodge City up by four. A Barton basket was answered with one by Rodeshia Mouton with 15.4 seconds left. Armstrong hit a free throw with 7.7 left after another Lady Cougar basket and an attempted 3-point shot to tie the game at the buzzer hit the front of the rim to secure the win.