MISSOULA — On Thursday night Montana's starting forwards, Abby Anderson and Carmen Gfeller, combined for 43 points as they helped the Lady Griz to a 90-77 Big Sky Conference women's basketball victory over Sacramento State.
From the tip, it looked like Sacramento State came to play as the Hornets went out on a 5-0 scoring run capped with a 3-pointer from Summer Menke.
However, Montana snapped out of its funk with an 8-0 run and outscored the Hornets 16-12 in the first quarter.
In the second quarter, both teams' shooting came alive as they shot better than 40 percent and Montana outscored Sacramento State by one point, 23-22.
In the third quarter, Gfeller and Anderson made the difference. Gfeller scored 10 of her 22 total points and Anderson added five of her 21 points. Anderson was also a force on the defensive end as she ended the night with five blocks.
In the final 10 minutes, the Montana defense did enough while the offense continued to roll, scoring 26 points on an incredible 10-for-13 shooting from the field.
Jordyn Schweyen, Madi Schoening and Hannah Thurmon each added two 3-pointers of their own for the Lady Griz.
For one Sacramento State player, it was a homecoming. Kalispell native Tiana Johnson was the leading scorer for the Hornets with 14 points on 4-of-13 shooting from the field and 2 for 5 from beyond the arc.
As a team, Montana out-shot Sacramento State, finishing 32 for 63 (50.8%) from the field compared to the Hornets' 27 of 71 (38%).
The Lady Griz (3-2 in conference) will host Sacramento State (0-7 in conference) for the second game of the series on Saturday at 10 a.m.