WOMEN'S BASKETBALL BLASTS MONTANA STATE
Alle Moreno scored a game-high 19 points as the Hornets dominated Montana State, 84-50.
SACRAMENTO, Calif. – The Sacramento State women’s basketball team matched its Div. I record for wins after pummeling Montana State, 84-50, in a Big Sky Conference game on Thursday night at The Nest.
The Hornets (17-11, 12-7 Big Sky) reached 17 wins just one other time since moving to Div. I for the 1991-92 season, and that was during the 1992-93 campaign when former head coach Sue Huffman’s squad went 17-10 as an Independent. The victory on Thursday night (16-12, 10-9) also gave the Hornets a season sweep of Montana State.
Sacramento State, currently tied with Idaho State for fourth in the league standings, has already secured a spot in the Big Sky Tournament and will be battling for seed as its closes out the regular season at 2 p.m. on Saturday afternoon against Montana. Idaho State owns the tiebreaker with the Hornets, so Sacramento State would need to win on Saturday versus Montana while the Bengals would need to lose at Portland State for the Hornets to jump to the No. 4 seed. Sacramento State can’t slide past No. 5 seed
After Montana won on Thursday night and Northern Colorado lost, the Lady Griz locked up the Big Sky regular season title and will host the conference tournament in Missoula, Mont. Montana also earns a first round bye. Despite the loss, Northern Colorado sewed up the No. 2 seed while Eastern Washington clinched the No. 3 seed with an overtime win over Idaho State on Thursday night. Montana State will be the No. 6 seed after losing to the Hornets while Southern Utah is now a game up on Northern Arizona for the final, No. 7 seed.
The Hornets will also honor its four graduating seniors – Mallorie Franco, Kylie Kuhns, Megan Kritscher and Natasha Torgerson – before their final career game inside The Nest.
On Thursday night, the Hornets never trailed in the game and it was only tied once, at 2-2, with 18:10 left in the first half. From that point until the 10:53 mark of the first half, the Hornets went on a 22-11 run to take an 11-point lead at 24-13. Sacramento State pushed its lead up to 44-24 at halftime and carried over that momentum into the second half.
The Hornets came out of the break on a 13-2 run to take a 31-point lead at 57-26 with 17:25 left in the second half. Sacramento State led by as much as 35 in the second half before winning by the final 34-point margin.
Alle Moreno paced the Hornets with a game-high 19 points on 7-of-15 shooting, including 5-of-9 from 3-point range. Kylie Kuhns tallied her 50th career double-double and reached 10+ rebounds for the 67th time with 12 points and 13 rebounds. Se’nyce Parrish posted 16 points on 7-of-10 shooting with two 3-pointers while Mallorie Franco chipped in 11 points. Fantasia Hilliard came close to a triple-double once again, with eight points, seven rebounds and tied her career-best with 11 assists.
Montana State did not have a single player score or rebound in double figures.
Sacramento State shot 49.3 percent overall on 34-of-69 shooting, including 9-of-20 from 3-point range. The Hornets snagged 51 rebounds, committed 21 turnovers and tallied 23 assists. They went 7-of-12 at the free throw line.
Montana State shot just 28.2 percent from the field on 22-of-78 shooting, with 2-of-16 coming from beyond the arc. The Bobcats grabbed 44 rebounds and were pressured into 21 turnovers with 12 assists. They went only 4-of-4 at the free throw line, the fewest attempts by any Sacramento State opponent this season.
Sacramento State closes out the regular season at 2 p.m. on Saturday against Montana for Senior Day.