(RMC Athletics release)
DILLON – The 18th-ranked Rocky Mountain College women’s basketball team came up short in its attempt to sweep the weekend road trip as they fell at Montana Western, 64-57, on Saturday night in Frontier Conference play.
Rocky (15-3, 5-3 Frontier) was playing its fifth game in six outings against a team either ranked or receiving votes in the NAIA Coaches’ Top 25 poll.
The Battlin’ Bears led 46-40 with 2:25 to play in the third quarter, but Montana Western (14-6, 4-4) went on an 11-2 run over the next 3-plus minutes to take a lead they never gave up.
Rocky never found any offensive flow as they shot just 36.7 percent with just 22 made baskets. They finished 3 of 14 from beyond the arc and converted just 10 of their 18 trips to the foul line.
Brooke Jones led the Battlin’ Bears with 16 points and four assists. She also grabbed five rebounds.
Western shot 37.5 percent on the night and went 5 of 19 from deep. They took advantage at the foul line with 19 makes in 23 attempts to go with a 40-35 edge on the boards. Each team committed nine turnovers.
Hailee Farstveet added 13 points and a pair of threes for Rocky. Markaela Francis finished with 10 points and nine rebounds off the bench.
Brianna King led Western with 23 points and Cierra Lamey had 16.
Rocky and Western have now split two meetings this season with each team winning at home. They will play again on February 22 in the Fortin Education Center.
Next weekend, the Battlin’ Bears head back to the road for two games. They will open the trip on Friday in Butte to face Montana Tech at 5:30 p.m.