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Montana rallies past E. Wash. to earn NCAA Tournament berth

(AP Photo/Tom R. Smedes)

RENO, Nevada (AP) Michael Oguine scored 21 points and top-seeded Montana rallied to win the Big Sky Conference Tournament and an automatic bid into the NCAA Tournament with an 82-65 victory over Eastern Washington on Saturday night.

The Grizzlies trailed 40-29 at halftime but outscored the Eagles 53-25 in the second half, adding the conference tournament championship to their regular-season title.

Ahmaad Rorie had 15 points, Bobby Morehead scored 12 and Fabijan Krslovic had 11 points and 10 rebounds for Montana (26-7).

Jacob Davison had 16 points and Bogdan Bliznyuk and Mason Pleating scored 15 each to lead Eastern Washington (20-14), which struggled from the field in the second half, hitting only 5 of 15 shots, including 1 of 7 3-pointers.

The Eagles led for much of the first half and were ahead 50-43 after a 3-pointer by Peatling with 14:30 left. The Grizzlies scored the next 11 points as part of a 25-8 run that put them up 75-58 with 2:30 left. Oguine, the tournament MVP, scored 15 points in the stretch.

Montana hit 17 of its 27 shots (63.0 percent) in the second half, including 6 of 12 3-pointers as it put the game away.


Eastern Washington: Faces an uncertain postseason future.

Montana: Awaits its NCAA Tournament seeding.


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Updated March 11, 2018

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