Photo Courtesy Tom Goodrich
MISSOULA, Mont. – Seniors Gretchen Harrigan and Ashlyn Crenshaw combined for 39 points and the Hornets shot 46% while holding Montana to just 60 points to pick up the first road win over the Lady Griz in program history, 73-60.
The Hornets had been 0-21 against the Griz all-time in Missoula. Playing in front of nearly 3,000 fans as Montana (3-16, 0-8 Big Sky) honored longtime head coach Robin Selvig, Sacramento State (7-11, 3-4 Big Sky) led for virtually the entire game and picked up its third win in the last four contests.
The 60 points allowed by the Hornets were the fewest this season and the least in more than a year, dating back to last Jan. 14 in a 68-59 win at Idaho State. Sacramento State's 46% shooting from the field was its second-best field goal percentage of the season and, in holding the Griz to 43% shooting, marked just the second time this year that the Hornets had a higher field goal percentage than their opponent.
In just her fifth game of the season Harrigan led the team in scoring for the fourth consecutive game, shooting a blistering 8-of-12 (67%) for a season-high 20 points with four rebounds, three steals, and two assists. Crenshaw had 19 points with a career-high five made 3-pointers (video), shooting 5-of-9 from 3-point range and adding two rebounds and two steals.
Montana never led and the game was tied for just 43 seconds as the Hornets led wire-to-wire. Sacramento State came out red hot, shooting 10-of-17 (59%) overall and 4-of-8 (50%) from 3-point range in the first quarter. Sacramento State had an early 16-5 lead and was up 25-14 after one quarter.
The Griz hit on 59% of their shots in the second quarter and cut their deficit to 41-35 at halftime. Crenshaw hit a trio of threes for nine points in the third quarter as the Hornets took a 63-48 lead to the fourth. A Tiara Scott basket two minutes into the fourth quarter gave the Hornets a game-high 68-50 lead, and though the visitors would score just three points over the last six and a half minutes of regulation time Montana got no closer than a 13-point deficit.
Senior Margaret Huntington chipped in seven points and five rebounds for the Hornets, who won despite leading scorers Maranne Johnson and Emily Easom each scoring just three points on Saturday. Johnson did have five rebounds and four assists as the Hornets were outrebounded by a slim 39-35 margin.
Sacramento State scored 19 points off 17 forced turnovers and outscored the Lady Griz 36-32 in the paint. The Hornets finished 11-of-30 (37%) from 3-point range and had 11 steals.
Saturday's win marked the second time in the last two years that the Hornets earned their first ever road win over a Big Sky opponent. The aforementioned 68-59 win at Idaho State last year was the first win for the program in Pocatello in 20 tries.
The Hornets look to avenge a slim 88-86 home loss to Portland State when the teams meet again next Saturday in Portland.