JASON FARMER/NEWS-SUN Thamires Andrade goes up for a basket during the second quarter of NMJC's 66-53 win over Western Texas Thursday night at Caster Activity Center. Andrade had 19 points for the Lady T-Birds.
Playing its first home game in almost two months, the No. 2 ranked New Mexico Junior College women's basketball team hung on to beat Western Texas College 66-53 at Caster Activity Center Thursday night, keeping the Lady Thunderbirds undefeated on the season.
While the Lady Thunderbirds got the win, head coach Drew Sanders was not pleased with how his team played.
"We shouldn't have won," Sanders said. "We got so many transition buckets early in the game that we built up a big lead. That is what we have been doing in a lot of our games, we just go out and play hard enough to get a lead and then just shut down. We are setting ourselves up for an upset."
New Mexico Junior College scored first and never trailed. The Lady Thunderbirds started the game with a 10-0 run before settling for a 16-11 lead after the first 10 minutes of play.
JASON FARMER/NEWS-SUN Jurnee President attempts to get around a Western Texas defender Thursday night during the Lady Thunderbirds' 66-53 win at Caster Activity Center.
In the second quarter, NMJC seemingly took control of the game in the second quarter. The Lady T-Birds opened the second quarter with an 11-0 run as NMJC outscored the Lady Westerners 26-4 in the second quarter, taking a 42-15 lead into the break.
"We weren't ready to play when the game started," Sanders said, "but we played well in the second quarter."
Leading by 27 points to start the third quarter, NMJC pushed its lead to a game-high 30 points, 45-15, with 7:05 left in the third. However, almost as soon as NMJC went up by 30, everything fell apart for the Lady T-Birds. Western Texas outscored NMJC 19-11 in the third quarter.
"We came out in the third quarter really, really flat with no energy," Sanders said. "We couldn't take care of the ball."
New Mexico Junior College's struggled continued in the fourth quarter as Western Texas outscored NMJC 19-13.
The Lady T-Birds committed turnover after turnover in the second half. allowing Western Texas to creep back into the game. The Lady T-Birds finished the night with 29 turnovers. NMJC had more turnovers in the second half
(16) than Western Texas had all game (14).
"We were color blind tonight," Sander said. "We threw it blue shirts than we threw it to our shirts. It is one of those things I have been trying to address in practice, that we have been winning and winning too easy and our execution has been too poor, really flawed."