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Montana Western men’s basketball comeback falls short

The University of Montana Western men’s basketball team took on Lewis-Clark State College in the first round of the Frontier Conference Tournament on Friday night in Dillon. The LCSC Warriors would beat the UMW Bulldogs 84-80 in the opening round.

Owsley-BlockUMW's Jake Owsley and Tyler Miller block a shot in Friday's first round gameThe Warriors seemed to take control of the game in the first 13 minutes building a 20 point lead with a 35-15 advantage with 7:21 remaining. Montana Western made a push before the half and cut the deficit to six heading into the locker room with a score of 40-46.

The Warriors fast start was sparked by Brady Bagby who dropped a first half high of 14 points. Jacob Champoux added seven while E.J. Farris had six points in the opening half. Montana Western’s comeback attempt was sparked by Maazin Butler’s 13 points in the final 7:21 and Jordan Overstreet’s five points. The Bulldogs got a big three-pointer from Kurtis Parsons and Jake Owsley had four points and made some big defensive plays in the paint.

In the second half the Bulldogs came out and continued to battle and gained their first lead of the game since the 17:32 mark in the first half when they grabbed a 62-60 lead with 9:40 remaining in the game. The teams continued a hotly contested game before the Warrior men pulled out the victory.

Overstreet-3-ptMontana Western's Jordan Overstreet makes one of his five three-point field goalsLewis-Clark had four players score in double figures and were led by Brady Bagby who had a team high 23 points. The Warriors received 19 points and seven rebounds from E.J. Farris as well. Jamaal Thomas had 12 points and Gavin Kauffman added 13 off the bench. Lewis-Clark shot 47 percent from behind the arc for the game and were on fire in the first half going 6-for-11 (54 percent) from that range.

UMW was able to close the first half deficit going 7-for-16 (44 percent) from three-point range in the opening half, but were slowed to 27 percent in the second half shooting 4-for-15 from behind the arc. The Bulldogs were able to get to the line 15 times and shot 93 percent from the stripe converting on 14 of those attempts. The Bulldogs were led by senior Maazin Butler’s game high 24 points. Jordan Overstreet added 23 points on 50 percent shooting, making five three-point attempts. Jake Owsley added 14 points and 8 rebounds.