SACRAMENTO, Calif. - Ryan Slider scored on a put-back layup with
three seconds to play to lift Montana to a 67-66 men's basketball
victory over Sacramento State Thursday night at Hornet Gym.
The win, which was the Grizzlies first on the road this season,
improved to the team to 8-13 overall and 3-7 in the Big Sky
Conference. The Hornets dropped to 4-17 overall and 1-9 in the Big
Trailing by one with 15 seconds to play, Montana worked the ball to
Kyle Keyes who attempted a three-pointer which clanked off the front
iron. Slider was able to gain position on two Hornet defenders and
converted the layup to give UM the lead. Sacramento State attempted
one final desperation pass that was intercepted by Dan Trammel at
midcourt to end the game.
The Hornets led for the majority of the first half until the Griz
went on a 9-1 run to end the period with a 31-25 edge. During the
stretch, which lasted 3:25, Sacramento State was only able to attempt
two field goals (both misses) and went 1-for-4 from the free throw
The Hornets opened the second half with a free throw by Arinze
Anoruo, a jumper by Rickie Glenn and a layup by Derek Lambeth to pull
within one. Montana, however, responded with a three-point play by
Brett Cummings. Rene Jacques eventually evened the score, 41-41, with
a three-pointer at the 13:21 mark. Trammel and Sacramento State
freshman Cedric Thompkins then exchanged baskets to keep the score
tied and Rame Batta gave the team its first lead (48-47) since late
in the first half with 10:45 to play.
Trammel returned the lead to the Grizzlies with a basket, a pair of
free throws and a tip-in. Travis Greenwalt then stretched the Montana
lead to seven points with a jumper at 7:16. UM held a seven-point
lead until 4:54 showed on the clock. Batta made a pair of free throws
and Anoruo scored on a layup to pull the Hornets within three.
Montana pushed its edge to five before Batta made another free throw,
Glenn scored on a layup and Pablo Gonzales knocked down a three to
tie the score, 63-63, with 1:11 left.
Slider continued to dominate the final minutes with a bucket with 37
seconds left but Gonzales responded with a three pointer to give
Sacramento State a 66-65 lead with 18 seconds left on the clock.
Over the final five minutes of the game, Slider scored eight points
including the game winner. The junior from Tigar, Ore., had missed
the team's three previous games due to pneumonia.
Sacramento State was paced by Rickie Glenn's 18 points. The senior,
who did not play on Wednesday due to a sprained ankle, came off the
bench to shoot 8-of-18 from the floor. Anoruo recorded his
team-leading fifth double-double of the year with 10 points and a
game-high 12 rebounds.
Montana had three players in double figures led by Trammel's 17. The
former Diablo Valley JC star went 7-for-8 from the floor and 3-of-4
from the stripe. Slider added 13 and Keyes chipped in 11.
As a team, Sacramento State shot just 36.7 percent (22-60) from the
floor and a dismal 54.8 percent (17-31) from the free throw line. The
team went to the stripe 31 times but was only able to make 17. Batta,
who entered the game as the third-best free throw shooter in the
conference, was 5-for-8 and Glenn was 2-of-7. Anoruo, who entered the
game shooting just 39.2 percent from the line, was the team's best
shooter going 8-for-12.
Montana was not much better from the floor. The Griz were 28-for-63
(.444) and just 3-for-18 (.167) from behind the three-point line. The
team also had trouble getting to and making shots from the free throw
line. Montana attempted just 14 free throws, making eight (.571).
Sacramento State will have one week off before its next game. The
Hornets travel to Montana State on Thursday, Feb. 15, before
travelling to Weber State on Feb. 17.