How many fans were actually paying much attention to the game? Very few. How much did that matter? Not at all!

Over 5,300 western Montana school kids got treated to a women's college basketball game today, and if the decibel levels were any indication, they sure were having a good time. That the home team won the game was a bonus, but we're not sure how many in attendance actually noticed.

In what has become a popular event nationwide on women's college basketball courts, the University of Montana Lady Griz once again held their annual School Day Game. Busloads of grade school kids piled into the Adams Center to scream, cheer, sing, dance and participate in a halftime promotion on the court. Since practically all the arena seating in reserved for them, only a few of us grownups get the opportunity to join them for a delightful midday change of pace.

As far as the game itself, the Lady Griz celebrated what might be described as a less-than-satisfying victory, unable to completely shake the University of Providence, a small NAIA school located in Great Falls, until the final quarter. Only making 6 of 33 three-point attempts (18%) will do that to a team. And playing without the team's best player, Carmen Gfeller, as she nurses an injury, has forced some additional lineup shuffling to try to find effective player combinations on the court.

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But senior Sammy Fatkin scored 24 points, and, after missing their first five shots of the game, Montana took a lead midway through the first quarter that they never relinquished, and gradually and methodically pulled away for a 71-43 victory.

Here's hoping all the school kids had as much fun as it sounded like they were having, and congratulations to all the teachers and assistant staff members who made sure they were all on excellent behavior.

The competition gets tougher again for the Lady Griz, when they host North Dakota this Sunday, November 20, at 2:00 p.m.

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