Even though it has been a long, hard season for University of Montana Lady Griz basketball, stars are beginning to twinkle.

And many of those stars are in the form of freshmen, indicating a bright future for the program. None shone brighter than freshman guard McKenzie Johnston from Helena, who on Tuesday was named the Women's Big Sky Conference Player of the Week for her tremendous performances on Thursday and Saturday, leading her team to their first two conference wins of the season.

McKenzie scored a total of 45 points in those two games, 19 in a win over Southern Utah. Then she really put on a show with 26 points against Northern Arizona, including a gutsy layup with five seconds to play to secure a one-point victory. She also totaled 14 rebounds and nine assists in the two games.

Montana only has two home games remaining this season, March 1 and March 3. If you got a little discouraged watching or haven't seen the team play this year yet, we suggest you give them a chance. Young (four freshman starters) and improving. A bright future indeed. Congrats, McKenzie!