BUTTE, Mont. – The fifth-ranked Westminster College women’s basketball team moved to 3-0 in Frontier Conference play with a 62-48 win over Montana Tech on Saturday night at Sampson Court.
Westminster has now won six straight games and is 14-2 on the year. The Griffins have gone 9-1 on the road this season and are tied atop the conference standings with that 3-0 mark. Montana Tech drops to 9-6 overall and 2-1 in the conference.
The Griffins used a 16-3 run early in the first half to open up an 18-10 lead that they would never relinquish. Tech tied the game at 22-22 and then again at 25-25 with 5:28 remaining in the first half. Westminster closed the half by outscoring Tech 11-4 and led 36-29 at the half. The team shot 48.3 percent from the floor in the opening 20 minutes and were 4-of-9 from beyond the arc (44.4 percent).
After pushing the lead to 47-33 at the 13:17 mark of the second half, Westminster went cold for the next eight minutes. Tech went on a 13-4 run during that time and trailed just 51-46 with 5:38 remaining. The Griffins responded by scoring 11 of the game’s final 13 points to claim the win. Westminster made just six baskets in the second half but went 14-of-18 at the foul line (77.8 percent) and was 5-of-6 in the final minute.
Westminster shot 38.5 percent from the floor in the win and was 18-of 24 at the foul line (75 percent). The Griffins held a 38-36 edge on the boards and scored 13 points from 12 offensive rebounds. They held the Orediggers to 32 percent shooting and only allowed three triples on 10 attempts. The Griffins forced 17 turnovers and scored 14 points from them.
The Griffins had six players score at least seven points and were led by Cydney Tibbitts with 12 points. She also grabbed a team-best nine rebounds with one assist and one steal. Nicole Yazzie scored 11 points with six rebounds, four steals and three assists. Kelsi Wells and Tia Pappas finished with nine points apiece and Brooke Blonquist had a season-high eight.
Mandy Machinal led all scorers with 20 points for Tech. She was 6-of-11 from the field and grabbed four rebounds. Kelsey DeWit had eight points, six rebounds and three blocked shots.
The Griffins will now return home for a Frontier Conference match-up with Great Falls (Mont.) on Thursday. The game begins at 5:30 p.m. from the Behnken Field House.
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