Coming into the Big Sky tournament, it looked like the 4/5 game between Northern Colorado and Montana State had the potential to be a really close, entertaining battle. For the first half, it looked that way too, as the Bobcats took a 30-28 lead into intermission, despite foul trouble from Antonio Biglow and Flavien Davis.
The second half, however, was a totally different story. The Bears ratcheted things up defensively and stayed aggressive offensively, outscoring MSU 41-26 in the second fram en route to a 69-56 victory.
The Bears blocked seven shots in the game, including three from Connor Osborne, who also finished with nine rebounds. The Bobcats went long stretches without getting good looks, and it showed up with their 39.6% shooting from the floor.
The Bears didn't get a huge day from Derrick Barden, but won from getting some contributions from everyone. Tate Unruh led the way with 21 points. Tim Huskisson had 14 and 7 and seemed to be everywhere on the court. Tevin Svihovec had 12 points, going 8/9 from the stripe. Paul Garnica hit two threes off the bench. It was an excellent team effort.
For the win, they play Montana in the semifinals. They have the talent to give the Grizzlies a game, especially if Derrick Barden and Connor Osborne can impose their will down low. They need to hit threes, and they need great defensive effort by the guards. It will be interesting.
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