(Editor's Note: Montana State Press Release)
POCATELLO, Idaho -- Montana State struggled offensively and couldn’t get the defensive stops when needed as Idaho State snapped the Bobcats’ eight-game win streak with a 69-59 victory on Thursday night in Reed Gym.
“Idaho State was more physical, tougher and executed much better than we did,” said MSU head coach Tricia Binford. “They picked us apart on our defensive mistakes and we lost the possession battle. Offensively, we stalled. We lacked movement and tempo as well as patience. We rushed too many shots.”
Montana State (13-6, 10-3) got down seven points early in the first quarter but were able to pull within 19-17 heading into the second frame. Idaho State (16-2, 12-1) outscored the Bobcats by one in the second period and as ISU entered intermission with a 32-29 advantage. MSU shot 33.3% in the opening half, while Idaho State hit at a 50% clip. The Bobcats went 10-of-11 from the line to keep the game close.
MSU tied the game at 32-all coming out of halftime on a Katelynn Limardo three-pointer, however a technical on the Bobcat bench at the 8:26 mark resulted in two ISU free throws and a Bengal basket on the ensuing possession which pushed Idaho State’s lead to nine points.
The Bobcats responded with a 12-5 run and a layup by Ava Ranson whittled the margin to 46-44. ISU scored with 17-seconds left in the quarter to hold a 48-44 lead heading into the final stanza.
ISU’s Montana Oltrogge hit a triple 30-seconds into the fourth quarter to give the Bengals a seven-point cushion. The Bobcats cut the margin to five-points on three occasions, the last coming on a Madison Jackson layin with just under two-minutes left, but MSU would get no closer down the stretch.
Montana State was led by Darian White with 16 points, while Limardo and Gabby Mocchi added eight points, apiece. Lexi Deden came off the bench to post six points and a team-high seven rebounds.
Oltrogge led four ISU players in double-figures with 14 points.
For the game, the Bobcats shot 35% from the field, but connected on just 5-of-24 (20.8%) from beyond the arc. Idaho State shot 50% for the game and converted on 9-of-21 from long distance.
“We turn around and play them again in less that 48-hours,” Binford said. “We have to find a way to respond. We need to show some resolve.”
The Bobcats will host Idaho State on Saturday at 12 p.m., in Worthington Arena.