Lady Griz Win 76-65 Over Vandals in First Game of the Holiday Classic

By AUSTIN SMITH

The Lady Griz overcame a dialed-in Vandal offense Thursday evening in the first game of the 32nd Annual Lady Griz Classic, a well contested 76-65 victory that featured 14 total Idaho three pointers.

Montana gave up an early lead, but rallied to balance the scoreboard on a streak culminating in Kellie Cole’s perimeter bucket with 12:00 left in the first.  The sophomore point guard led her team well in the face of a relentless Vandal shooting display and, coupled with fellow soph Carly Selvig’s dominant presence in the key, brought the Lady Griz up 36-29 at halftime.

Junior guard Torry Hill took over point guard duties at the whistle and quickly notched two of her seven total assists, initiating back-to-back fast break buckets and doing her best to carry on Cole’s momentum.  Heads-up ball movement by Hill paved the way for Katie Baker’s deadly mid-range shooting, who led her squad with 15 points on the game and was one of four Lady Griz to score in double figures.

Similar to the teams’ matchup last Sunday, Montana maintained a 15-20 point lead throughout the second half despite a physical Vandal defense.  Looking to avoid the repeat, Idaho kept their head up and continued to drain threes as the clock wound down, sparking a promising scoring run after picking Hill’s pocket at half court with 5:00 on the clock.

It was not to be, however, as Cole and Baker monopolized the boards and piloted a stoic maroon defense that logged a collective 36 rebounds and 12 forced turnovers.

The Lady Griz will take on Tennessee State in the third and final game of the round-robin Classic on Saturday, November 1st.

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Carly Selvig fights for a rebound over Idaho's Maren Austgulen late in the second half of Thursday's 76-65 victory.  Dahlberg Arena in Missoula, Mont., November 29th, 2012.
Carly Selvig fights ...
Members of the UM Spirit Squad perform a stunt mid-way through the first half of Thursday's matchup.  Dahlberg Arena in Missoula, Mont., November 29th, 2012.
Members of the UM Sp...
Sophomore forward Carly Selvig adds two of her eight total points in the face of Idaho's Ali Forde (#13).  Dahlberg Arena in Missoula, Mont., November 29th, 2012.
Sophomore forward Ca...
Katie Baker looks for an open teammate under heavy Vandal pressure.  Baker finished the game with a team-high 15 points.  Dahlberg Arena in Missoula, Mont., November 29th, 2012.
Katie Baker looks fo...
Torry Hill sweeps her way past the Vandal's unforgiving press, led by sophomore point guard Krissy Karr (#3).  Dahlberg Arena in Missoula, Mont., November 29th, 2012.
Torry Hill sweeps he...
Vandal Addie Schivo (#20) protects a late-game rebound while Carly Selvig (#24) looks to steal and Maggie Rickman (#32) tries to avoid an elbow to the face.  Dahlberg Arena in Missoula, Mont., November 29th, 2012.
Vandal Addie Schivo ...
Sophomore forward Maggie Rickman drives the lane looking to add to her nine point, four rebound stat sheet.  Dahlberg Arena in Missoula, Mont., November 29th, 2012.
Sophomore forward Ma...
The bears show off for the 32nd Lady Griz Classic during a first half timeout.  Dahlberg Arena in Missoula, Mont., November 29th, 2012.
The bears show off f...
Katie Baker tries to stem the tide of perimeter buckets midway through the first half of Thursday's 76-65 victory.  Dahlberg Arena in Missoula, Mont., November 29th, 2012.
Katie Baker tries to...