McKinney breaks scoring record in Lynx win
WEBSTER CITY — Taylor McKinney played it cool as she trotted down the floor to a thunderous standing ovation during the third quarter last night. She knew, of course, but she didn’t want to let her emotions take over.
It was only when Webster City head coach Nicole Muhlenbruch called a timeout moments later that she took just a moment to reflect. There was a smile and a big hug from teammate Tatum Goings, who had raced out onto the court to greet her.
When it comes to 5-on-5 scoring, there’s never been anybody better to wear a Lynx uniform. And now that is a fact.
On a drive to the bucket — it was almost like the sea parted for her — right down the middle of the lane with 2:40 remaining in the third period, McKinney became Webster City’s all-time leading scorer during a 50-37 victory over Clarion-Goldfield-Dows.
McKinney’s 17th and 18th points of the night pushed her past Kayleigh Epps, who held the mark of 895 points since she capped her legendary Lynx career in 2004.
McKinney poured in 26 points and WCHS (5-12, 3-8 NCC) turned in arguably its best performance of the season to avenge a 45-42 loss to the Cowgirls (9-10, 5-7 NCC) in December.
“Doing it at home, getting the win, this is exactly what I wanted,” McKinney said after she finished celebrating with her teammates in the locker room afterwards. “Breaking it is really big, but playing as a team and getting what we wanted, it’s more special.”
Entering the contest with 879 career points, McKinney put Epps, who was in attendance, on notice with a 14-point first half. She ripped off 10 in the second quarter to help the Lynx take a 26-17 lead.
And she didn’t waste much time pushing past Epps after the teams returned to the floor following the break.
“Kayleigh Epps is the greatest 5-on-5 player that I’ve known of,” McKinney said. “I never got to watch her play, but she’s big-time. So to break her record, it’s special.”
The admiration is mutual.
“(McKinney) is so deserving of this record,” Epps said after watching it all unfold. “That girl is so cool and collected at all times and it’s a record I hope she remembers for the next 15 years like I do. She’s a true athlete and I’m lucky to have watched her and met her.”
McKinney finished 9 of 14 from the field, including 4 of 9 from behind the 3-point arc. Coming off screens, she splashed in a pair of 3s early in the second period to put WCHS in control for good. CGD tied the game briefly at 11, but never led.
“I couldn’t do this without my teammates because they’re really working hard to get me open,” McKinney said.
Ahead 39-27 after three quarters, WCHS built its lead to 15 on Kelly Stoakes’ second triple of the game midway through the fourth.
The Lynx shot 51 percent overall (19 of 37) and outscored the Cowgirls 21-0 from behind the arc. Perhaps even more importantly, they turned the ball over just six times against CGD’s zone defense and patiently moved the ball before picking their spots to attack.
Adalie Schwandt dropped in nine points and collected six rebounds in the lane for the Lynx. Her offensive rebound and three-point play extended the Lynx lead to double digits, 37-25, with 2:05 to go in the third.
Grace Hoversten drained an early 3 and scored five of her seven points in the first quarter. The junior forward also yanked down a game-high 10 rebounds.
Now with 905 career points, McKinney has put herself in position to make a run at becoming the program’s first 1,000-point scorer. That’s always been a goal, she admitted, but it’s not her focus as the season begins to wind down.
“Getting 1,000 is where I want to be, but that’s not something I’m worried about right now,” she said. “I’m worried about the team.”
Webster City 50, CGD 37
Thursday at Webster City
CGD (9-10, 5-7 NCC) — Jadyn Jondle 0 0-0 0, Raven Kinnetz 4 0-0 8, Quinn Hansch 1 0-0 2, Courtney Harley 2 0-0 4, Megan Askelsen 2 0-0 4, Vanessa Kolb 8 2-7 18, Morgan Middleton 0 0-0 0, Emily Kapka 0 1-2 1. Totals: 17 3-9 37.
Webster City (5-12, 3-8 NCC) — Tatum Goings 0 0-0 0, Taylor McKinney 9, 4-4 26, Atlanta Hopp 1 0-0 2, Zoey Woodle 0 0-1 0, Jenna Miller 0 0-0 0, Leah Kasch 0 0-0 0, Kelly Stoakes 2 0-0 6, Grace Hoversten 3 0-0 7, Adalie Schwandt 4 1-4 9. Totals: 19 5-9 50.
CGD 9 8 10 10 — 37
Webster City 11 15 13 11 — 50
3-point field goals — WC 7 (McKinney 4, Stoakes 2, Hoversten). Rebounds — WC 27 (Hoversten 10, Schwandt 6). Steals — WC 3. Assists — WC 12 (Hoversten 5, McKinney 3). Turnovers — WC 6. Team fouls — WC 10, CGD 14. Fouled out — CGD: Kolb.