Collin College Basketball has hit its stride going into conference play, winning seven of eight recent games and climbing to the top of the North Texas Junior College Athletic Conference rankings.
The Lady Cougars sit in first place at 5-1 in NTJCAC play and 14-6 overall after wins over some tough opponents.
Collin's women had a double-overtime slugfest vs. McClennan County Highlassies, with the Lady Cougars coming out on top 89-83. Destiny Thurman was a scoring machine with 37 points, followed by Lucy Ibeh and Cydney Rivera, each with 14. The team shot 40 percent from the field.
Thurman, Rivera, and Ibeh also led in Collin College's 87-74 home win over Temple College, Jan. 15. Thurman had 23 points, followed by Rivera with 16, then Ibeh who matched Awatea Leach with 14 points.
The Collin College women never left doubt of who was in control in their 69-56 win over Southwestern Christian College. The Lady Cougars went up by nine in the first quarter and didn't look back. Thurman had 16 points, followed by Ibeh with 15 and Anyssia Gibbs with 10. The team played stellar defense, coming up with 12 steals and eight blocked shots in the game.
The Lady Cougars had one of their best shooting percentage nights of the year against Grayson College sinking 31-57 for a 54 percent average from the field and 60 percent from downtown. Scoring was again spread out with Ibeh (22 points), Thurman (19 points), and Gibbs (17 points) taking the top three spots.
Ibeh was awarded the Region V Women's Basketball Player of the Week for Jan. 14.
Collin's men have a 15-5 overall record, with 4-2 in conference. They are currently in second place in the NTJCAC.
The Cougars fell 79-68 to McClennan on the road with the Highlanders outscoring Collin in both halves. Orion Virden led scoring with 21 points, followed by Nighael Ceaser with 14 and Ta'Veon Sevaaetasi with eight. The team shot just 36 percent from the floor.
That shooting percentage improved to 44 percent in Collin's home stand against Temple, and the Cougars pulled off an 82-79 upset of one of the conference's tougher teams. Mason Hix led with 21 points, followed by John Achebe with 15 and Addison Wallace with 13.
The Cougars followed that up with a 94-66 win over Southwestern Christian College. Myles Fitzgerald-Warren led with 20 points, followed by Achebe (17 points) and Ceaser (15 points). The team shot 54 percent from the field and 48 percent from behind the arc.
The Collin men mounted a comeback in their 87-79 win over Grayson College, again shooting a respectable 49 percent from the field. Ceaser led the team with 25 points, followed by Hix with 21 and Sevaaetasi with 16.