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Chambers sparks Bulldogs over Lewis-Clark State

UMW News Bureau

Bridger Chambers scored a career high 17 points (13 in the second half) to lead the University of Montana Western Bulldogs men’s basketball team past the Lewis-Clark State Warriors 78-56 Tuesday night in the quarter-final round of the Frontier Conference tournament. By Lowell Peterson Bridger Chambers scored a career high 17 points (13 in the second half) to lead the University of Montana Western Bulldogs men’s basketball team past the Lewis-Clark State Warriors 78-56 Tuesday night in the quarter-final round of the Frontier Conference tournament. For the first 15 minutes, the game looked like it might end up being a battle to the finish. With 5:06 to play in the first half, the game had been tied six times and Montana Western held a slim 24-22 lead. Over the next five minutes the Bulldogs outscored the Warrior 12-5 to take a 36-27 lead into halftime. Brandon Brown scored eight points in the run and Jake Owsley and Tyler Miller each scored two. Brown opened the second half with a three pointer to push the lead to 12 points before Jeray Key and Nick Fromm hit back-to-back baskets to cut the lead to eight. That was as close as the Warriors would get the rest of the game. Over the next eight minutes Montana Western went on a 20-6 run to push the lead to 59-37 with 8:47 remaining in the game. Chambers nailed two deuces and two triples to score 10 points in the run. With less than five minutes to go, coach Steve Keller pulled his starters and the bench got an opportunity to get some minutes. JC Isakson made three of four free throws shortly after he entered the game and Gabe Rucker and Vince Turk each hit a basket. The nonstarters played well and pushed the Bulldog lead to 30 points, 78-48, with 1:58 remaining on two Jordan Overstreet free throws. The Warriors scored the last eight points of the game getting two free throws from Darin Stewart and a pair of three pointers from Sean Fischer. Brown led the Bulldogs with 24 points, making three of five three-pointers and going 9-13 from the field overall. Chambers matched Brown from the three point line, went 6-8 from the field and made both his free throws for 17 points. Tyler Hurley recorded a double-double with 13 points and 10 rebounds. He also matched Kyle Erickson with a team-leading six assists. As a team, Montana Western shot .509 (27-53) from the field, .529 (9-17) on three-pointers and .750 (15-20) from the free throw line. The Warriors were led in scoring by Fromm with 11 points and Stewart with 10. PJ Bolte was the rebound leader with seven and Stewart and Key each had three assists. L-C State was .396 (21-53) from the field, .350 (7-20) from beyond the three point line and .875 (7-8) on free throws. Lewis-Clark State ended their season with a record of 16-13. The 17th-ranked Montana Western team improved to 23-8 and will host the Westminster College Griffins, 21-10, at home in a semi-final tournament game on Friday, March 2 at the Straugh Gymnasium. Game time will be 7 p.m.
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