Bobcats end season in Big Sky Tournament

After a decisive 65-57 victory over the Montana Grizzlies at home on March 7, the women’s basketball team made the trip to Missoula for the 2015 Big Sky Tournament. Ranked as the seventh seed, the Bobcats lost to the second seed Sacramento State Hornets 78-62 in the first round of the tournament.

On Wednesday, March 11 the Bobcats took on the Hornets in the first day of Big Sky Tournament play. The lead changed hands several times in the first half as both the Bobcats and Hornets traded runs. It was the Hornets that closed out the first half on a run however, outscoring the Bobcats 9-2 to take a 42-36 lead at the half. The Hornets came out strong at the start of the second half and rattled off six straight points. The Bobcats cut the lead down to four points several times in the second half, but a 10-0 run by the Hornets shut down the Bobcats’ attempted comeback.

“Our team has been playing so well down the stretch and rising in pressure situations that we felt could play to our strengths,” Head Coach Tricia Binford said. “The outcome was more of Sac State just being quicker to hustle plays, rebounds and really just controlling possessions.”

The Hornets then cruised to a 76-52 win over the Bobcats. Junior forward Jasmine Hommes led all scorers with 22 points, and senior guard Kalli Durham added 12 points for the Bobcats. Sacramento State was led by Gretchen Harrigan with 19 points. “With how we finished the season strong as a group, winning 8 of our last 11 games to tie for fifth in conference says a lot about the future of this team,” Binford said.

Seniors Ausha Cole, Durham and Jackie Elliott all had strong roles their final season. “Our graduating seniors had terrific careers at MSU and the returners have a great finish to build from going into next year,” Binford said.