Photo Gallery: Lady Griz vs Tennessee State

By AUSTIN SMITH

Lady Griz forward Katie Baker was interviewed last month for the Montana Sports Roundtable as to a shared sense of urgency amongst her senior teammates.

This intensified level of play was readily apparent Saturday evening as Baker led her squad to an uncontested 71-48 win over Tennessee State, the closing game and their second win of the 32nd Annual Lady Griz Classic.

In contrast to their Thursday night performance, ‘Selvig’s Superlatives’ came out firing on all cylinders, keeping the board neck and neck thanks to the perimeter shooting of Shanae Gilham and the off-ball intensity of Alyssa Smith.

Tennessee’s surprisingly scrappy defense began to crumble after a momentum-shifting steal from Gilham at the eight minute mark. Their offensive precision went down the drain as well, and Montana began to establish a buffer that would persist through the final whistle.

As the final five minutes of the first half wound down the Lady Griz were plagued by sloppy ball movement and allowed a brief Tiger scoring run. Forwards Maggie Rickman and Jordan Sullivan kept up a strong presence in the paint and maintained maroon control, mitigating missed passes by grabbing several crucial rebounds on both ends of the floor and taking Montana up 34-26 at the half.

Looking for an upset, the Tennessee defense came into the second period ablaze and the Lady Griz suffered several early turnovers; but they were not to be deterred. Montana continued to crash the boards, and, buoyed by Gilham’s ranged precision, rode an unrelenting 20-point lead that peaked with back-to-back fast break buckets from senior Kenzie De Boer on the assist (both times) from point guard Torry Hill.

The Lady Griz will play at home again next Thursday, December 6, when they host the Wyoming Cowgirls for a non-conference matchup.

Click on a photo below to enlarge it and start the gallery.

 

Tennessee's Donyeah Mayfield (#33) lends a helping hand while Montana's Katie Baker appeals to the zebras after a controversial charge was called at halfcourt.  Dahlberg Arena at Missoula, Mont., December 1st, 2012.
Tennessee's Don...
The Sugar Bears, UM's elite dance team, performs during a second half timeout Saturday evening.  Dahlberg Arena in Missoula, Mont., December 1st, 2012.
The Sugar Bears, UM&...
Senior guard Kenzie De Boer takes to the court as teammates Alyssa Smith, left, and Katie Baker wait to greet her.  Dahlberg Arena in Missoula, Mont., December 1st, 2012.
Senior guard Kenzie ...
Lady Griz Maggie Rickman (#32) and Alexandra Hurley prepare to rebound a missed free throw, as Tennessee's sophomore forward Donyeah Mayfield swims around the corner.  Dahlberg Arena in Missoula, Mont., December 1st, 2012
Lady Griz Maggie Ric...
Sophomore forward Carly Selvig blocks center Destiney Gaston's shot late in the second half.  Selvig finished the game with four blocks and three steals.  Dahlberg Arena in Missoula, Mont., December 1st, 2012.
Sophomore forward Ca...
Kenzie De Boer gets a hand in the mix at halfcourt late in Saturday's 71-48 victory over the Tennessee State Tigers.  Dahlberg Arena in Missoula, Mont., December 1st, 2012.
Kenzie De Boer gets ...
Kenzie De Boer takes a hard foul to the forehead from Tennessee's sophomore point guard Rachel Allen.  Dahlberg Arena in Missoula, Mont., December 1st, 2012.
Kenzie De Boer takes...
Monte plays peek-a-bear with Devin Schreiber around his mother Nichol.  The Schreibers were Saturday's winners of the Best Seat in the House and cheered the Lady Griz to a 71-48 victory over Tennessee State.  Dahlberg Arena in Missoula, Mont., December 1st, 2012.
Monte plays peek-a-b...
Fellow seniors Kenzie De Boer, left, and Katie Baker were honored with slots on the all-tournament team; Baker was also the MVP for the 32nd Lady Griz Classic.  Dahlberg Arena in Missoula, Mont., December 1st, 2012.
Fellow seniors Kenzi...