COUNCIL BLUFFS, Iowa — Former Jayhawk Conference Western Division rival Butler Community College defeated Cloud County 87-77 in the first round of the Holiday Inn/Hampton Inn Classic Friday afternoon.
Butler, which moved from the Jayhawk West to the Jayhawk East this season, got a dominating effort by 5-11 sophomore Te’era Williams down the stretch to battle back from five points down to get the win.
Williams scored 34 points in the game, and pulled down 11 rebounds. She hit 8 of 15 field goal attempts and 18 of 19 free throws.
“She just completely dominated inside, especially late in the ball game. She single-handedly just dominated in the last five or six minutes of the game,” Cloud County coach Brett Erkenbrack said.
Cloud County fell behind by double figures early in the game, but battled back to take a lead late in the second half.
Williams then took over and carried the Grizzlies to the win.
In the other game played Friday, host Iowa Western Community College downed Mineral Area College, 81-72.
Butler bolted to a 12-2 lead against Cloud County.
The T-Birds cut the deficit to six points, 39-33, at halftime.
“I felt pretty fortunate to be in that situation,” Erkenbrack said.
Cloud County would fight back and take a five point lead in the second half.
Led by Williams, the Grizzlies erased that deficit and picked up the win.
“We just gave it away. Again, it was turnovers,” Erkenbrack said.
Cloud County had five players score in double figures led by sophomore Jayna Smith. She knocked down 11 of 12 free throws.
Courtney Fisher tossed in 17 points and grabbed eight rebounds.
Jordyn Alexander and Tai Nittler scored 11 points each.
Linda Pagrode added 10 points.
Cloud County was just 22 of 64 from the field for 34 percent.
In a game in which there were 77 free throws shot, the T-Birds hit 31 of 39 for 80 percent.
Teanna Reid scored 19 points for Butler, and Ashley Gibson added 11.
The Grizzlies were 27 of 55 from the floor for 49 percent and 32 of 38 from the line for 84 percent.