By GREG WEBB
During the couple of hours fans were at the Betty Jo Crumm Graber Athletic Center to take in the North Texas Junior College Athletic Conference (NTJCAC) opener between Weatherford College and McLennan College, the predicted cold front arrived outside.
But the chill apparently pervaded the inside of the gymnasium as well, evidenced by the lack of offense for either team in the first half, as players had trouble finding rhythm and range. The WC Lady Coyotes ultimately thawed the most, enough to win their inaugural 2013 conference game, 74-67.
“I didn’t think we were ever going to start scoring,” said WC head coach Bob McKinley. “We missed 16 layups in the first half. That will get you every time.”
Had either squad found their touch early on, a considerable advantage may have been in the offing, but when the shooting did warm up, the range was found by both sides.
Weatherford had to play a bit of catchup early on, but with the help of Itiana Taylor and Alexia Kelley, the Lady Coyotes took a 4-point advantage into the half-time break.
With Kelley contributing 10 points to the mix before the break, Taylor poured in 13 of her own, and was just getting started, getting an even hotter hand and finishing with 30 points to lead all scorers.
“Itiana played really well, especially in the second half,” McKinley said of the 6-foot freshman from Plugerville, “She got very aggressive and really helped us.”
Taylor is a welcome addition back into the Lady Coyotes’ fold. Just in time for conference play, she is healthy and having an immediate impact.
[Itiana] missed all of our games in the first half of the season, except one,” said the long-time WC coach. “She played in a couple of scrimmages to start the year and messed up her ankle.