(Editor's note: Montana Athletics press release.)
MISSOULA — Montana's Carmen Gfeller, who led the Lady Griz to a 67-65 road win at Cal Poly on Saturday night, has been named the co-Big Sky Conference women's basketball player of the week.
Gfeller scored 21 points against the Mustangs, 15 of those coming in the second half as Montana rallied from deficits of eight points in the second quarter and six in the final period.
It’s the fourth career player of the week award for Gfeller, who was voted to the preseason All-Big Sky team in October, and the first player of the week award for the Lady Griz since the 2021-22 season.
“This is a well-deserved honor for Carmen,” said third-year Lady Griz coach Brian Holsinger. “She continues to improve and most importantly, she helps our team be successful. I’m proud of her.”
Gfeller scored two points in the first quarter, four in the second on Saturday night as Montana fell behind 24-18 after 10 minutes, 36-34 at the break.
With Montana trailing 45-38 late in the third quarter, Gfeller scored seven straight points to even the score before Cal Poly rebuilt its lead to six, 54-48, midway through the fourth.
That’s when Gfeller and fellow upperclassmen Gina Marxen and Maggie Espenmiller-McGraw put their stamp on the game.
That trio accounted for 16 of Montana’s 19 points on its game-ending 19-11 run over the final 5:01 that turned a six-point deficit into a two-point victory.
Gfeller scored inside at the 5:01 mark to give the Lady Griz their first points of the quarter and make it 54-50. Marxen followed with a five-point possession to give Montana a 55-54 lead.
Gfeller assisted on Espenmiller-McGraw’s layup with 16.7 seconds remaining that gave Montana the lead for good.
Gfeller now has 1,271 career points. She ranks 14th in program history.
The Lady Griz will face San Diego and UC San Diego this week at the USD Winter Classic.