The MCC Lady Thunderbirds got off to a blazing start in their 86-44 blowout against their conference opponent Chandler-Gilbert CC Lady Coyotes on Feb. 1.
Mesa forced three turnovers and scored 10 points, all in the paint, in first 2:12 to start the game up 10-0.
A Coyotes time out proved to solve nothing as Mesa immediately forced two more turnovers and took the score to 15-0 before Chandler-Gilbert was able to get a solid bucket.
Coyotes guard Jennifer Corona tried to give her team a spark by hoisting up several rushed long distance shots, but only managed to go two of 8 from beyond the arc, including one shot that hit nothing but air.
Mesa’s stifling defense and inside scoring continued throughout the first half going into halftime with a 40-13 lead.
Not wanting her team to lose their fire, Mesa head coach Kori Stephenson told her team at half that “the score was 0-0, stay driven.”
The Thunderbirds kept that mentality as the second half was just like the first.
Mesa continued to force turnovers and played a suffocating defense, allowing Chandler-Gilbert to shoot just 21.4 percent from the field and forcing 17 turnovers including seven steals on the day.
On offense, the same story continued for MCC as they dominated the paint. Mesa outscored Chandler-Gilbert 60-12 from inside and shot an impressive 60 percent from the field, including 67 percent in the second half.
Mesa guard Haley Vennard seemed to be contributing from everywhere, finishing the night with 12 points, five assists, five rebounds, three steals and a block.
The Thunderbirds also got double digit scoring from forwards Alli Gloyd and Jade Wilson who shot a combined 11 of 14 and has 10 and 14 points respectively.
The win improved MCC’s record to 16-6 including seven of their last eight. When asked about their current run and how to keep it going coach Stephenson responded “We’ve just got to stay driven and keep pedaling and we have Scottsdale on Saturday. One game at a time”