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UNSTOPPABLE — Mounsey scores 21 in Region VI title win PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 07 March 2018 21:43


The Lady Saints shoe the tournament bracket after defeating Independence for the Region VI championship, 59-47 Wednesday in the Hartman Arena in Park City. L&T photo/Earl Watt


• Leader & Times

PARK CITY — Despite an all-out attempt to limit Mollie Mounsey with face guarding defense, the Region VI Tournament MVP still found a way to score 21 points, 17 in the second half, to lead the Lady Saints to their first Region VI title in 11 years with a 59-47 win over Independence Wednesday.

Mounsey played 39 of the 40 minutes, and she might as well have been wearing a Lady Pirate for make-up — that’s how tight they played her on defense.

That defensive pressure took the Lady Saints out of their offensive sets early, and despite a 7-0 run to start the game, Seward trailed 12-11 after the first quarter.

“Our defensive intensity set the tone,” Seward coach Toby Wynn said. “We created some defensive havoc and chaos for them. Our players got the pace of the game going, and then their defense settled in and made it difficult for us to score.”

After being outscored 12-4 to finish the first quarter, and with Mounsey facing stout defensive pressure, the Lady Saints had to find offense elsewhere, and they did in the second quarter from Silvia Veloso and Brennyn Seagler.

Veloso was able to get five steals in the first half and she scored six of her eight first half points in the second quarter to rally the Lady Saints to a 25-20 lead at half.


Mollie Mounsey (32) celebrates with Vanessa Caro (23) after winning the Region VI championship with a 59-47 win over Independence Wednesday at the Hartman Arena in Park City. L&T photo/Earl Watt

“Offensively we were out of control,” Wynn said. “We weren’t even thinking, We weren’t running anything that we said to run in the first quarter. I tried to get us to settle down a little bit. Brennyn made a couple of key buckets for us there in the second quarter, and we were able to force a lot of turnovers and  steals in the first half. We just didn’t convert them to points and couldn’t get any separation.”

By half, the Lady Saints were only shooting 30 percent, and while Independence was shooting 35 percent, the 18 forced turnovers allowed Seward to take the lead.

After a pointed halftime conversation from Wynn, Mounsey was a different player in the second half. She only scored four points in the first half with a face guarding defense, but she found ways to get free in the second half and dropped two three pointers in the third quarter. The Lady Saints extended their lead to 43-34 by the end of the period.

And Mounsey continued to ring the bell in the fourth quarter. Despite a suffocating defense, the sophomore still scored 21 points, 17 of those in the second half. 

The Lady Saints reached a double digit lead early in the fourth quarter and was able to maintain the advantage for the 59-47 win.

Mounsey was selected the tournament MVP, and she was joined on the All-Region VI team by Veloso and Vilma Covane.

Mounsey said the halftime discussion helped her regain her focus in the second half.

“In the first half I was going everywhere,” she said. “I lost my mind. I let it come to me at the end.”

For Wynn, this was the first Region VI title since 2007 with several quality teams coming up just short in the past.

“Im elated for our program,” he said. “A lot of really good previous players have gotten to this point and couldn’t finish. I remind our players of the people who came before them, and to try to protect them and elevate the tradition.”

And Wynn had some motivation of his own that he brought to the tournament — a DVD of Coffeyville’s run.

“I carried the Coffeyville DVD in my bag all week long,” Wynn said. “I wanted to remind myself, try to use it as motivation for myself, to pull off something like that as well.”

Along with Mounsey’s 21, Covane and Seagler each scored 11, and Veloso had 10.

The Lady Saints automatically qualify for the NJCAA National Tournament, and Wynn is hoping that winning a highly competitive Region VI championship will come into play for the seeding committee.

“I hope the national committee gives us some recognition for how tough our league is,” he said. “We played 26 league games every Saturday and Wednesday since November with no bye week. It is taxing on our players and coaches. You hope the seeding is respectable and deserving, then you have to go out and play the games. We are excited to be playing this time of year.”




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The High Plains Daily Leader and Southwest Daily Times are published Sunday through Friday and reaches homes throughout the Liberal, Kansas retail trade zone. The Leader & Times is the official newspaper of Seward County, USD No. 480, USD No. 483 and the cities of Liberal and Kismet.  The Leader & Times is a member of the Liberal Chamber of Commerce, the Kansas Press Association and the Associated Press.

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