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Griz, Lady Bobcats win Brawl of the Wild Part One


February 4, 2019

406 Sports

Montana's Michael Oguine drives against Montana State's Russell Daniels on Saturday in Bozeman. The Grizzlies edged the Bobcats in the Brawl of the Wild.

The Montana State Bobcats have got the better of the Montana Grizzlies in football the last three years. The Bobcats, though, have been unable to flip that script on the hardwood.

Saturday night in Bozeman, the Grizzlies beat the Bobcats for the 15th time in the last 16 Brawl of the Wild men’s basketball games, with a 83-78 win in the 298th meeting between the rvials, in front of a sold-out Brick Breeden Fieldhouse.

Redshirt senior Ahmaad Rorie finished with 20 points and nine rebounds to lead the Grizzlies in both categories. Senior Michael Oguine tallied 17 points and redshirt seniors Jamar Akoh and Donaven Dorsey had 12 and 10 points respectively. Akoh added six rebounds to his performance.

“Couldn't draw it up any better if you want to create a theme and make a movie out of it,” Montana coach Travis DeCuire added. “We were going to have to out-scrap them to get the win. There’s no way you’re going to come in here and get a pretty win."

Montana withstood a scoring explosion from Montana State standout senior Tyler Hall. He finished with 26 points on 10-for-20 shooting, four of which came from deep.

Montana seemingly couldn’t miss to open the game, knocking down 8 of its first 11 shots including 4 of 5 from deep as the Grizzlies grabbed a 23-14 lead.

From there MSU began mounting its comeback, going on a 12-4 run to get within 36-33. After repeatedly getting within a one-possession game, Livingston native Ladan Ricketts knocked down a 3-pointer as the halftime buzzer sounded to send MSU into the break up 48-46.

The game went back-and-forth down the stretch with neither team grabbing an edge until UM led 77-69 with 3:53 to go, the second half’s largest lead. But Montana State quickly responded with six points to get within two with 2:21 to play. That was as close as they got as Rorie knocked down four free throws to end the game while junior Sayeed Pridgett added a layup.

Montana finished shooting 50 percent from the field including 38.1 percent from deep. The Bobcats finished 46.8 percent and 36.4 percent respectively.

Montana State junior guard Harald Frey finished with 15 points and 10 assists. He scored six straight down the stretch that allowed MSU to get back into the game late. Redshirt sophomore Devin Kirby added 10 points.

Montana improved to 15-6 overall and 8-2 in conference. Montana State fell to 8-12 and 5-5. Montana hosts Idaho on Thursday while Montana State is at Northern Colorado Monday. The Cat-Griz rematch is Jan. 24 in Missoula.

MSU women topple Lady Griz

The Montana State Bobcats and Montana Lady Griz were dead even in the Big Sky Conference Standings heading into Saturday afternoon’s Brawl of the Wild in Bozeman.

But even isn’t what the two teams were inside the Brick Breeden Fieldhouse as the Bobcats ran away from the Lady Griz, 74-52.

It was the Bobcats’ sixth win in their last eight meetings with Montana, and the 22-point margin is their largest ever in a victory over the Lady Griz.

After falling into its nine-point hole, MSU adjusted into a zone defense, which gave the Lady Griz problems. Montana struggled to score wither inside or out, and shot just 16 percent in the second quarter and 26 percent in the third. Sophomore Sammy Fatkin led Montana with 13 points while senior Jace Henderson scored just seven points on 2-for-6 shooting while fighting through early foul trouble.

It was a 20-5 scoring run that propelled the Bobcats in the second quarter. Squires utilized screens to get to the rim and either score or dish. Smith finished with 11 points. She and Braxton missed just three shots between them.

Squires also hit four 3-pointers. Her corner three late in the third quarter capped another big run that put MSU ahead by 19 points and effectively ended the competitive phase of the game.

Lundberg and Wright each scored nine points for MSU, which finished the game shooting 47 percent (29 of 62) and hit nine threes. Mocchi, stepping up in Kuderer’s absence, added eight points off the bench.

The Lady Griz made just 30 percent of their shots (21 of 70). Gabi Harrington and Jordyn Schweyen each scored nine points for Montana.

With the victory, Montana State improved to 11-9 and 6-4 in the Big Sky Conference, and broke a fifth-place tie in the league standings with the Lady Griz, who dipped to 10-9 and 5-5. The two better rivals will meet again Feb. 24 in Missoula.


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