Lady Griz Enjoy 56-42 Win Over Northern Colorado

By AUSTIN SMITH

The Montana Lady Griz enjoyed an uncontested 56-42 victory Saturday afternoon, sending the Northern Colorado Bears back into hibernation thanks to a double-double by senior forward Katie Baker.

Despite monopolizing possession for most of the first half, the Bears shot a dismal 21% from the field and held the lead only one time throughout the game: a 2-point margin in the very first minute.

Shortly thereafter the Lady Griz opened the throttle on back-to-back Baker steals, pouring in a handful of perimeter buckets and punching a hole in Northern Colorado’s defense that ultimately lead to 20 turnovers.

The Bears fought valiantly to regain their footing, outrebounding the Lady Griz but simultaneously being gutted by 13 Montana points off turnovers.  Katie Baker led the Lady Griz with 18 points and ten rebounds, the only Montana player to score in double digits.

Baker also had four of Montana’s 12 steals, and was helped along by junior forward Jordan Sullivan’s nine points and four rebounds.  The Lady Griz exhibited great depth and teamwork, pairing 19 points off the bench with 14 team assists.  Every Montana player with minutes on Saturday scored at least two points, and all but one had playing time in double digits.

Currently tied with the Lady Cats for first in the Big Sky Conference, Montana will defend their position and home turf next Saturday, January 19th, when the MSU Lady Cats come to town in an intra-state rivalry double-header that will also feature the men’s teams from both universities.

The Lady Griz will then be back on the road, facing Idaho State on Thursday, January 24th, and Weber State on Saturday, January 26th.

Click on images below to enlarge and scroll through photos.

Kenzie DeBoer reaches for a loose ball as Northern Colorado's Lauren Oosdyke pushes them both to the ground.  Dahlberg Arena in Missoula, Mont., January 12th, 2013.
Kenzie DeBoer reache...
Jordan Sullivan (#31) and Alyssa Smith defend against Northern Colorado's D'shara Strange.  Dahlberg Arena in Missoula, Mont., January 12th, 2013.
Jordan Sullivan (#31...
Katie Baker sets up a free throw; she was 4-4 from the line Saturday afternoon and led the team with 18 points.  Dahlberg Arena in Missoula, Mont., January 12th, 2013.
Katie Baker sets up ...
Kenzie DeBoer steps in front of Northern Colorado's Molle Duehn during the second half of Saturday's victory.  Dahlberg Arena in Missoula, Mont., January 12th, 2013.
Kenzie DeBoer steps ...
Alexandra Hurley (#23) and Lindsay Mallon fight for a rebound early in the first half of Saturday's matchup.  Dahlberg Arena in Missoula, Mont., January 12th, 2013.
Alexandra Hurley (#2...
Maggie Gilham (#32) defends against Northern Colorado's Stephanie Lee while Carly Selvig looks on.  Dahlberg Arena in Missoula, Mont., January 12th, 2013.
Maggie Gilham (#32) ...
Northern Colorado's Lindsay Mallon rebounds off the head of Katie Baker.  Dahlberg Arena in Missoula, Mont., January 12th, 2013.
Northern Colorado�...
Katie Baker steps around Northern Colorado's Lindsay Mallon for a lay-up during the second half of Saturday's win.  Dahlberg Arena in Missoula, Mont., January 12th, 2013.
Katie Baker steps ar...
Jordan Sullivan, right, gets a dirty look from Northern Colorado's Molly Duehn shortly after a foul was called in the first half of Saturday's contest.  Dahlberg Arena in Missoula, Mont., January 12th, 2013.
Jordan Sullivan, rig...
Jordan Sullivan looks to pass over the hands of Kim Lockridge (#23) during the second half of Saturday's win over Northern Colorado.  Dahlberg Arena in Missoula, Mont., January 12th, 2013.
Jordan Sullivan look...