By EARL WATT
• Leader & Times
Homecoming couldn’t have been scripted any better for Fabiana Monte Saturday. The sophomore guard lit up the scoreboard with six three-pointers and 20 points to lead the No. 10 Lady Saints to an 87-53 win over Dodge City, and then she lit up the Greenhouse when she had to immediately trade in her green and white uniform for a stunning evening gown, and she emerged from the locker room just as she was being announced as a candidate for homecoming queen.
And she won that, too.
“It was a tremendous night for her, well deserved,” Seward coach Toby Wynn said. “She’s a great kid. I am really happy for her. Everything she has put into this program, this institution, it was good to see her rewarded like that. It was fun to watch.”
The Lady Saints took control from the tip, and the high-octane offense of Dodge City was shut down. After averaging 86 points a game all season, the Lady Conquistadors only managed 53 against the Lady Saints.
“I thought from the opening tip to the end defensively we did exactly what we wanted,” Wynn said. “Our kids executed. For our kids to play the way they did defensively was tremendous.”
Dodge City did not score for the first five-and-a-hal minuted, and by the time Samantha Herrera put in the Lady Conq’s first basket, the Lady Saints had a 12-2 lead.
Monte answered the first Dodge City points with a three-pointer, and over the next eight minutes she hit two more to go along with six from Kyndal Davis, a basket from Briana Scott and another two points from Rebekah Hatchard, and with 6:18 to play in the half, Seward had a 31-7 lead.
Monte added another three before half, and the Lady Saints had a 43-20 advantage.
Little changed in the first six minutes of the second half, and after Johlica Williams hit a jumper for the Lady Conqs to narrow Seward’s lead to 53-31, Dodge didn’t score for almost eight minutes while the Lady Saints went on a 25-0 run including two more threes from Monte and another from Korina Chapman. By the time Keeli Tolar hit a three-pointer for Dodge City with 6:40 to play, Seward had a 78-34 lead.
Seward slowed the game down the rest of the way and coasted to the 87-53 win.
“We moved the ball inside and out, and we knocked down some perimeter shots,” Wynn said.
But it was the defense that made Wynn beam after the victory.
“Dodge City played Cloud tough earlier,” he said. “They played Barton tough, they had a chance to win. They played Pratt to overtime. They score everywhere. We knew they had some firepower. We had a good plan and a good day of preparation Friday. I couldn’t be happier for our kids.”
Monte led the Lady Saints with 20 points. Shanise Brooks scored 14, and Davis added 12.
Seward (19-2, 4-1) will host Cloud (12-8, 3-2) Wednesday. Free tickets are available at First National Bank locations.