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Montana basketball programs pick up road wins in California

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Posted at 9:38 PM, Dec 17, 2023
and last updated 2023-12-17 23:38:48-05

It was an undefeated week for the Griz athletic programs.

As football punched its ticket to the FCS national championship game, the Montana men's and women's basketball programs picked up wins on the road in California over the weekend.

The Montana Lady Griz (4-3) scored a win over Cal Poly 67-65 on Saturday in San Luis Obispo. Carmen Gfeller poured in 21 points and had three blocks while Gina Marxen added 17 points and five assists for Montana. Dani Bartsch led the way with 11 rebounds and two steals as well.

Montana trailed 36-34 at halftime and the game was a nail-biter down to the bitter end. Cal Poly led 65-64 with 24 seconds to play, but Maggie Espenmiller-McGraw scored a layup with 16 seconds to go to give UM the lead. Cal Poly was unable to score on its next possession, and Gfeller added one free throw in the final seconds to seal it for Montana.

UM shot 47.4% from the field and went 10 for 23 from 3-point range.

Meanwhile, the Griz men had a rematch with San Jose State on Sunday, and make it a season sweep for Montana (6-4) as the Griz topped the Spartans 86-75 to win their fourth straight game.

Four players scored in double figures for the Grizzlies as Aanen Moody led the way with 21 points and eight rebounds while Laolu Oke had a huge performance with 16 points and 15 boards. Money Williams added 15 points and seven assists and Giordan Williams tacked on 11 for the Grizzlies.

Montana defeated San Jose State 75-58 in Missoula back on Dec. 2.

The Grizzlies shot it at a 48.3% rate from the field and went 7 for 23 from deep.

The Griz men next play on Tuesday at UC Davis in another rematch. UM defeated Davis 78-65 back on Nov. 12. Meanwhile, the Lady Griz play at the USD Winter Classic this week in San Diego. Montana will play the University of San Diego on Wednesday and UC San Diego on Thursday.