The MSUB offensive was working for the Yellowjackets with Rylee Kane pouring in a career-high 25 points and Tiana Hanson just short of her career-best with 23 as MSUB survived a barrage of 3-pointers to defeat Western Oregon 74-67 in a Great Northwest Athletic Conference game Saturday at Alterowitz.
The Wolves made 15 3-point baskets on 31 attempts (48.4 percent), the most in a GNAC game this season and just two short of the all-time record of 17 by Seattle Pacific (2007) and Central Washington (2012).
WOU's Shelby Snook had eight 3-pointers on 15 attempts, the most in the conference this year, as the junior finished with a game-high 30 points. Jasmine Miller was 3 for 3 from long range with 16 points and Sydney Azorr had two 3-point baskets and 11 points.
While the MSUB defense struggled on the outside against Western Oregon, the Yellowjackets did force 20 turnovers converting those to 25 points while maintaining good ball control with just seven of their own turnovers.
Lexi Prevost had three steals in the game with 10 points and a team-high five assists.
Jeanann Lemelin took a charge for MSUB under the WOU hoop.
Hanson completed a double-double for MSUB with 11 rebounds. After a perfect 10 for 10 from the free-throw line in the win against Concordia Portland on Thursday, Hanson made it 19 straight, going 9 for 9 from the charity stripe Saturday. Against CU, MSUB was 23 for 24 from the free-throw line and was again over 80 percent on the night, finishing 13 of 16 shots against WOU.
The Wolves were even with MSU Billings in overall shooting percentage from the field, but struggled from the free-throw line at 8 for 14.
The Yellowjackets were solid from the outside with seven 3-pointers and outscored the Wolves 36-12 in the paint.
With the win, Montana State Billings improves to 6-10 overall and 3-5 in the GNAC. Western Oregon falls to 6-9 and 2-6 in GNAC action.
"I am very excited for our team to get the second win this week," MSUB head coach Kevin Woodin said. "I thought we had a good week of practice to finish with the two victories. Tonight. I thought we had good offensive flow and limited our turnovers. We also had a good combination of inside to outside scoring."
"I thought Rylee was very aggressive offensively for us," Woodin continued. "Tiana was also very solid and had some key free-throws down the stretch. I am proud of how everyone competed tonight. We got some good play off the bench from our freshmen. Brina also hit several needed 3-pointers."
The first half was punctuated with short runs by MSUB followed by a 3-pointer that just kept the Wolves within reach. The 'Jackets earned their double-digit lead on a jump shot by Hanson, 35-25, with three minutes remaining in the half. WOU closed the gap on a 3-pointer from Launia Davis and a jump shot by Miller. After a MSUB timeout, Kane rolled off a screen to drive to the hoop, finishing with a layup for the 7-point lead at half-time.
"I was pleased with our first half effort," Woodin said. "We let Western Oregon slice our lead down to one point, 41-40, but I thought we recovered well on both ends of the court. Shelby shot lights out tonight against us and had a very good game."
A 3-pointer from Snook and a layup from Azorr closed the MSUB lead down to 41-40 with 6:36 remaining in the third period. The Yellowjackets recovered their offensive firepower with an 11-0 run to give the team their largest lead of the game at 12 points, 52-40.
Snook had a trio of 3-pointers in the final 44 seconds, but it wasn't enough as from the free-throw line Hanson was 4 for 4 and Hull 2 for 2 in the last 40 seconds to ice the game.
Hull finished 2 for 3 from outside and had eight points. Freshmen Taylor Cunningham had an outside shot and Jeanann Lemelin gave the team quality minutes taking a charge on a runaway layup. Junior Grace Weeks led the team in rebounds with six and had one assist and a steal.