BILLINGS – The Rocky Mountain College men’s basketball team couldn’t slow the shooting of No. 16 Montana Western in a 103-84 loss on Saturday night in the Fortin Education Center.
Rocky (9-6, 1-3 Frontier) gave up the most points in a game since allowing 109 to Indiana Wesleyan in 2015. Montana Western (12-3, 2-2) shot 65.6 percent from the field and was 9 of 17 from beyond the arc in the win.
Despite an 11 of 14 start for Western, Rocky mounted 15-4 run to take a 33-31 lead with 5:52 to play befor halftime. The Bulldogs responded with an 11-4 run to close the half and lead 46-39 at the break. Western would hit 75 percent in the second half, including a 16 of 18 stretch over the first 13 minutes.
The Battlin’ Bears shot 43.8 percent and they converted all 11 free throws. They had 19 assists on 32 baskets and just four turnovers. Rocky secured 12 offensive rebounds for 16 points and they scored 13 points from the six UMW turnovers.
Jared Samuelson led the Battlin’ Bears with 26 points and seven rebounds. Austin Payne finished with 16 points off the bench and Satchel McDonald added 12 points.
UMW had a 35-33 advantage in rebounds and they scored 54 points in the paint to 32 from the Battlin’ Bears.
Dom Robinson led the Bulldogs with 35 points and nine assists. Zaccheus Darko-Kelly added 28 points and nine rebounds.
Rocky now heads for Helena, Mont. and a Tuesday contest at No. 2 Carroll. The third straight games against a ranked opponent for Rocky tips at 7:30 p.m.