The Washington State women's basketball team ran into a bit of a buzzsaw on Wednesday, losing their first-round WNIT matchup against Montana 90-78. The Grizzlies started out hot and the Cougars couldn't make up the gap, despite a strong second half.
Montana scored the first six points of the game and never trailed. While Montana was able to hit some shots early, the Cougars were ice cold. WSU made just 9-of-36 attempts in the opening 20 minutes, including just 2-of-12 from deep. Montana led 36-25 at the break. WSU got rolling in the second half, but unfortunately for the Cougars, so did the Grizzlies. The Cougars made 55.9 percent of their shots en route to 53 second half points. Despite that, they still lost ground to Montana which scored 54 in the second half. The Grizzlies hit 5-of-7 three-point attempts during the second half. WSU never got closer than eight points.
"They came out with the first punch and we never recovered from it," WSU guard Tia Presley said, via the Missoulian. "They hit shots. We knew they would. For some reason we just never bounced back. Our shots weren't falling in the first half but our defense wasn't working, either."
With the loss, WSU's season is over. The postseason run wasn't long, but making the postseason was a positive step for the Cougars. They finish the year 17-17, the most wins since the 1994-95 season. The postseason appearance was WSU's first since 1991.
Lady Griz take down Washington State despite injuries to 2 starters
Depleted by injuries but determined to extend their season, the Montana Lady Griz dug deep and delivered an historic win on Wednesday night.
Cougars' season ends with WNIT loss to Montana - Spokesman.com - March 19, 2014
Washington State had plans to run and score at Dahlberg Arena Wednesday, but the Montana Lady Griz had the quick start and strong finish, in a 90-78 win over the Cougars in the WNIT.
Cougars Fall To Montana in WNIT Opening Round - Washington State University Official Athletic Site
Washington State dropped its WNIT opening round road matchup 90-78 to the University of Montana at Dahlberg Arena Wednesday. The Cougars season ends with a 17-17 overall record, the most wins under head coach June Daugherty and the most since the 1994-95 team also won 17. The Cougars earned their first trip to the postseason since 1991.
Who is next for the Cougars? - SportsLink - Spokesman.com - March 19, 2014
I've been told Kelvin Sampson (pictured) longs to get back into college coaching. He's won at Washington State before. He knows the territory. Yes, he broke NCAA rules at Oklahoma and Indiana and was sanctioned for it, hit with a five-year show-cause penalty. Guess what? Those five years are up. They ended in November.
McGrath: If this Moos is smart, he’ll go after a Bison | John McGrath | The News Tribune
As soon as Washington State’s inevitable firing of basketball coach Ken Bone was made official Tuesday, Cougars fans began pondering what athletic director Bill Moos’ search list might look like.