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March Sadness For Griz After 81-34 Loss to Syracuse at NCAA Tournament

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photo by Brooke Andrus

When your team has more turnovers than know things have not gone well in a college basketball game.

The Syracuse Orange dominated the Montana Grizzlies Thursday night in San Jose during their second round NCAA Tournament game in every way possible. The final score was 81-34. The Griz shot only 20.4% from the field, and for the first time this season, not a single Griz player scored in double figures.

The loss to Syracuse, a top-20 team, does not diminish what this Montana team has accomplished over the season just ended. The Grizzlies won their second straight Big Sky Conference regular season and tournament championship. After losing the Big Sky’s Defensive Player of the Year Will Cherry before the season even started, the team still won 25 games, tying last season’s win record. They also won a record 19 league games, losing only to league power Weber State on the road.

Junior Kareem Jamar was named the overall MVP of the league, and Will Cherry repeated as the league’s top defender.

The Grizzlies are well-stocked for the future, after losing just two seniors, Cherry and the team’s leading scorer Matthias Ward who was lost for the final few games of the season with a foot injury.

And, there’s 7th year head coach Wayne Tinkle, named Big Sky Coach of the Year for the second straight season.

Hats off to the Griz for a great season.

Now…the Lady Griz face Georgia Saturday in Spokane. Hear that game on KGVO 1290 AM and 101.5 FM.

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