Dusty Baker fired off the Weber State bench to score 20 points and lead the Wildcats past Montana, 60-54 Saturday night in Ogden, Utah, to take sole possession of first place in the Big Sky Conference, breaking a first-place tie with the Grizzlies.
Playing without center Joel Bolomboy, who suffered a bone bruise in his knee in a game last week with Northern Arizona, the Wildcats took control early, building a 30-22 lead at intermission.
Michael Oguine got to the basket for a layup with just under a minute left to pull Montana within five, 56-51. Kyndahl Hill and Baker each added a free throw for Weber State and Jack Lopez drilled a 3-pointer for the Grizzlies to set the final margin.
Cody John and Zach Braxton each added 13 points for Weber State (22-7, 14-2).
Oguine finished with 21 points and eight boards for Montana (18-9, 13-3). Martin Breunig added 15 points.
Idaho State 76, Montana State 69: Ethan Telfair scored 31 points to lead the Bengals to a victory over the Bobcats in Pocatello.
Telfair made six 3-pointers and added six rebounds and four assists. Geno Luzcando chipped in 14 points and Gary Chivichyan had 11 for Idaho State (15-13, 10-6), which made 10 of 23 3-pointers, but was just 22 of 36 for 61-percent shooting from the line.
Tyler Hall had 27 points to lead Montana State (12-16, 7-9), which has lost three straight since having its three-game winning streak snapped.
Montana State’s Sarp Gobeloglu made a pair of free throws to tie it at 65-all with five minutes remaining. The Bengals closed on an 11-4 run to seal it. Telfair and Luzcando scored five points apiece, and the Bobcats missed three shots and had four turnovers during the stretch.
North Dakota 97, Sacramento State 71: Quinton Hooker sank a career-high five 3-pointers and scored 34 points to lead the Fighting Hawks past the Hornets in Grand Forks, North Dakota.
Hooker finished 11 of 12 from the field and went 7 for 8 from the line to record his second game in a row with more than 30 points. Drick Bernstine added 12 points for North Dakota (15-12, 9-6) and Dustin Hobaugh had 11.
The Fighting Hawks shot a season-high 63 percent from the field (36-57) and hit 12 of 22 from long range to finish their conference home stand with a three-game sweep.
Tied at 11 in the first half, North Dakota took control with 10 straight points by Hooker, followed by a 3-pointer from Adam McDermott to cap the 13-0 run, and led the rest of the way.
Justin Strings led Sacramento State (11-16, 4-12) with 26 points, Eric Stuteville and Jeff Wu had 11 each.
Southern Utah 69, Northern Arizona 59: Christian Thompson hit 4 of 8 3-point attempts and scored 16 points to lead a strong effort by the Thunderbirds bench as Southern Utah knocked off the Lumberjacks in Flagstaff, Arizona.
Southern Utah got 44 of its 69 points from its bench, led by Thompson and Trey Kennedy, who combined to score 30 points as the Thunderbirds snapped a five-game losing streak to Northern Arizona.
Southern Utah led by four, 22-18 with under seven minutes to play in the first half, but closed out the period to take a 37-28 advantage into intermission.
The Thunderbirds will close out the season with two more road games next weekend.
John Marshall had 14 points, converting 10 of 12 from the line, for Southern Utah (5-21, 3-13).
Ako Kaluna scored a career-high 28 points for Northern Arizona (5-22, 3-13) in its final home game of the season.
Portland State 89, Northern Colorado 86: Calaen Robinson scored 14 points, and his 3 with two seconds left lifted the Vikings past the Bears in Greeley, Colorado.
Portland State (10-17, 6-10) led 80-70 with 6:26 to go. The Bears then went on a 13-2 run in the next three minutes and took an 83-82 lead on a Jordan Wilson 3-pointer.
The teams traded leads before Wilson made 1 of 2 free throws to tie it at 86 with 30 seconds to go.
Earlier, Portland State squandered a 15 point lead–71-56–after outscoring Northern Colorado (9-19, 6-10) 22-12 over close to a seven-minute span.
Northern Colorado built a 14-7 lead early before the Vikings outscored the Bears 20-13 and tied it at 27 on Robinson’s 3 with 6:52 left before the half. Portland State led 46-39 at halftime.
Anthony Johnson led the Bears with 30 points–seven off his career high–on 10-for-16 shooting.
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