ISU Women's Basketball
Bengals Defense Stifles Griz in 65-58 Victory
Idaho State women's basketball went into Dahlberg Arena in Missoula, Mont. and came away with the 65-58 win over the Griz. The Idaho State Bengals (14-8, 10-3 BSC) defeated the Montana Lady Griz (13-6, 6-4 BSC) for the fifth straight time, fourth straight at Dahlberg and is now 9-2 in the last 11 games.
The Bengal defense held the griz to 12 points below their season average while securing the win.
ISU put together a solid second half to defeat a strong Montana team. "I'm very proud of how we regrouped in the second half," remarked Head Coach Seton Sobolewski.
Heading into the game, the Bengals knew the importance of coming out strong. ISU and UM were sitting in the 3rd and 4th place spots in the conference standings and the Bengals needed to bounce back after their five-point loss to MSU on Thursday.
Facing the challenge, the Bengals came out on fire in the first period led by Estefania Ors. The Graduate Guard went four-of-five from the floor to lead the team with eight points in the first 10.
Led by Ors, the Bengals jumped to a quick nine-point 14-5 lead over the Lady Griz. Montana wasn't going to go down easy hitting two consecutive three pointers to pull the game to within 5 with one minute to play in the quarter.
Dora Goles hit a layup to extend the Bengal lead to 18-11 and the Bengals defense held for the remainder of the period with the Orange and Black taking the seven-point lead into the second quarter.
The second-quarter saw the lady Griz try to storm back while the ISU defense continued to push back strong.
The Bengals and Lady Griz went back-and-forth during the period and in the final two minutes of the half the two programs traded the lead twice. The Bengals took a two -point lead with 35 seconds left and Montana responded with four seconds left to head into the locker room with the two teams tied at 30.
The Bengals came out with renewed vigor in the 3rd quarter immediately taking a five-point lead after a Konate turnaround jump shot and an Ors three-pointer making the game 35-30 with 8: 45 to go.
The Bengals and Griz would continue going back and forth during the period with Montana pulling back to tie the game five separate times in the period.
Knowing the team needed a spark the Bengal leaders stepped up first with Konate converting an 'and-1' play then Ors stepping up and hitting a three with nine seconds left in the period giving the Bengals a 49-43 lead headed into the final quarter break.
Those six points proved to help the team immensely as the two teams continued their back-and-forth grind in the final period. ISU eventually outscoring the Lady Griz by just one point 16-15 in the quarter.
When it mattered, the Bengals hit four clutch free-throws at the end of regulation to secure the 65-58 victory over Montana.
Ors led the scoring on both teams, going eight-of-14 from the field for 18 points. The Graduate guard also went two-of-four from three point range.
Konate and Whitman also scored in double digits for the Orange and Black with 14 and 11 points respectively.
The Bengals lost the battle on the glass 41-36 with Montana grabbing 15 boards to ISU's 13. Even though Montana outrebounded the Bengals, ISU took better advantage scoring 11 second chance points to Montana's 7
ISU took full advantage of the Grizzly turnovers. The Bengals had 19 points off of 16 UM turnovers compared to Montana only scoring eight off of ISU's turnovers.
Despite the back and forth nature of the game, the Bengals defense held strong as the Lady Griz tied the game eight times but only holding the lead for 1:41 of game time.
The Bengals are back home next week as they welcome the Idaho Vandals to Reed Gym for an ICCU Battle of the Domes matchup!
Follow along at ISUBengals.com to keep up to date with the team and the action.