DILLON — The University of Montana Western women’s basketball team fell 81-49 to Montana State University in Bozeman.
Turnovers were the Bulldogs’ biggest problem in the contest, as MSU turned the Bulldogs over 24 times. Montana State also shot 47 percent from the field, 36 percent from the three-point line, and 92 percent from the free throw line to help push past the Bulldogs.
Montana Western ended the game shooting 35 percent from the field, 24 percent from the three-point arc and 44 percent from the free throw line. Junior Sammi Bignell led the Bulldogs in scoring with 15 points on the night. Kaci Matthies added eight rebounds to the Bulldogs stat sheet while Roxy Thurman chipped in eight points and four rebounds.
“Obviously the result wasn’t what we were hoping for, but playing against MSU is a great test for our team,” head coach Lindsay Woolley said. “Their length, strength and athleticism are greater than any team we will face all year. Their pressure really hurt us and they destroyed us on the boards.”
After facing the Bobcats, the Bulldogs traveled to Salt Lake City, Utah to take on the Westminster Griffins on Saturday, Nov. 1. Westminster started the game with the hot hand shooting, and that hot hand lasted the Griffins the entire 40 minutes of the contest. The Griffins shot almost 50 percent from the field, 46 percent for threes, and 79 percent from the free throw line. The Bulldogs, on the other hand, were not so fortunate. Montana Western shot 30 percent from the field, 63 percent from the free throw line and only 13 percent from the three-point line. The difference in the shooting percentages led to the 35-73 score and the loss for the Bulldogs.
“It is a deflating feeling when you feel like you didn’t do a horrible job defensively and the opposition still shoots like Westminster did,” Woolley stated. “Give credit to their kids; for the first 15 minutes of the game they shot the ball as well as any team has that I can remember. When you pair that with poor shooting on our end and our 19 turnovers you see a result like we had on Saturday. I am confident we will regroup and have a better performance next weekend against Calgary.“
Montana Western’s junior varsity also played this past weekend in Billings, Mont., where the Bulldogs lost two very close games. The Dec. 1 game was lost in overtime 61-57. Freshman Melody McCloud led the team in scoring with 16 points while Breyenne Mosey added 13 points and McCall Hasquet chipped in 10 points.
The Bulldogs were looking for revenge on Dec. 2, but did not find it even though freshman Annie Couch caught fire during the second half of the game. The freshman made seven three-pointers in the second half to end the game with 23 points. However, the game was still lost 64-58. McCall Hasquet also added ten points to the game total.
The Bulldog varsity women will play again this week on Dec. 7 and 8 at 5:30 and 4 p.m. as they take on the University of Calgary in Dillon, Mont. in the Straugh Gymnasium.
The Bulldogs junior varsity will have a slight break until Dec. 10 when they play the Salish Kootenai College Bison for the last four games of their season. They will play Dec. 10 and 11 in Pablo, Mont. before hosting the Bison on Dec. 15 and 16 for the Bulldog’s last two games.
— Montana Western Sports Information