UMW News BureauThe University of Montana Western Bulldogs made it a clean sweep in Salt Lake City, Utah at the Westminster Tournament coming home with three wins to keep their record unblemished at 7-0. By Lowell Peterson The University of Montana Western Bulldogs made it a clean sweep in Salt Lake City, Utah at the Westminster Tournament coming home with three wins to keep their record unblemished at 7-0. On Thursday against La Sierra University, the Bulldogs built a 22-point lead in the first half and cruised on for a 76-45 victory. Four Bulldogs scored in double figures. Sammi Bignell led the way with 18 points, Kassi Kerbs came off the bench to score 13 and Nicole Tams and Hayley Pettit added a dozen each. Brooke Zeiler was tops in rebounds with six and Roxy Thurman had a team-high six assists. Joirdan Jones was the lone player to score in double figures for La Sierra, matching Bignell with 18 points. Montana Western built a 15-point halftime lead against Cal Maritime on Friday and expanded it in the second half for a 33-point victory, 88-55. The Bulldogs had six players score in double figures. Bignell, Tams and Pettit each scored 14. Pettit also grabbed 11 rebounds to record a double-double. Jenna Banks scored 10 points and Thurman and Breyenne Mosey came off the bench to score 13 and 10, respectively. Zeiler led the way with five assists and grabbed seven rebounds. Kerbs also snared seven boards. Alexsis Brown topped Maritime with 14 points, making all eight of her free throw attempts. Marisa Carion scored 12. The game on Saturday against the College of Idaho was much closer. The Bulldogs had a slim lead at the break, 34-31, and stretched it by outscoring the Coyotes by nine in the second half for an 80-68 win. Montana Western had four players score in double figures. Pettit scored 25 points and pulled down eight rebounds. Tams made six of seven field goals and all four of her free throws for 17 points and Bignell finished with 11 points and five assists. Kerbs nailed two threes, made all four of her free throws and only missed one field goal attempt to score 12 points off the bench. Tina Fakahafua (21), Katelin Shannon (17) and Diamond Mitchell (12) topped College of Idaho in scoring. Fakahafua also grabbed 10 rebounds for a double-double. Getting three wins on the road is always satisfying and Bulldog head coach Cara Cocchiarella was happy with the team’s play. “I thought we played great team basketball this weekend,” Cocchiarella said. “In each of our games we were challenged in a different way and our girls did a great job of stepping up to those challenges. We have been really concentrating on a few things in practice lately and we were a little better in those areas this weekend, but we still have room for improvement.” “It was very good to see the girls make adjustments throughout the tournament and we are excited about the wins,” Cocchiarella added. “Hopefully we will continue making adjustments and get better with each game.” The Bulldogs play an exhibition game on Nov. 17 in Bozeman against Montana State University before moving on to play MSU-Billings on Friday, Nov. 18 in Billings. Both games have a 7 p.m. starting time.
The University of Montana Western has launched a national search for the provost and vice chancellor for academic affairs position.