UMW News BureauThe University of Montana Western Bulldogs men’s basketball team saw their four-game winning streak come to an end with a 60-56 overtime loss to the Cal State San Marcos Cougars Tuesday night in the final game of the Cal State San Marcos Christmas Tournament. By Lowell Peterson The University of Montana Western Bulldogs men’s basketball team saw their four-game winning streak come to an end with a 60-56 overtime loss to the Cal State San Marcos Cougars Tuesday night in the final game of the Cal State San Marcos Christmas Tournament. The Cougars are competing in their first year of basketball but have assembled an impressive, talented team. The squad boasts a group of tall, talented and athletic players, including eight who were previously affiliated with NCAA Division I basketball programs. In previous games this season the Cougars have faced five teams ranked in the top 25 in the latest NAIA Division I basketball poll. They lost games to #1 ranked Concordia 88-92, #9 Azusa Pacific 55-63, #10 Westminster 66-76, #15 Biola 56-66, and defeated #11 Mountain State 75-65. Montana Western led by as many as seven points early in the first half and held a slim one-point lead at the break, 28-27. The Cougars scored the first seven points to start the second half, opening up a six-point lead, but the Bulldogs battled back to take a 37-36 lead on a Tyler Miller jumper with 11:44 to play. An 8-0 run by San Marcos gave them their biggest lead of the game four minutes later, 44-37. Kyle Perry’s layup tied things at 44-all and Kyle Erickson’s three-pointer put the Bulldogs on top 49-44 with 4:03 to play in regulation, completing a 12-0 run. The Cougars answered with their own 6-1 run to make it 50-50 and send the game into overtime. The overtime featured three lead changes and one tie before Tim Steed converted five-of-six free throws down the stretch to clinch the four-point victory for the Cougars. Perry had the best game of his Bulldog career with 18 points, 13 rebounds, two assists and three blocked shots. Brandon Brown added 22 points and six assists. Tyler Hurley grabbed 10 rebounds, but no other Bulldog scored more than six points. Aaron Chamberlain led the way for San Marcos with 16 points and 13 rebounds (eight offensive). Bryan Emanuel, playing his first game of the year, scored 14, Jacob Ranger added 12 points and Steed reached double figures with 10. Montana Western fell to 11-4 on the season while San Marcos improved to 6-7. The Bulldogs will play at Montana State University-Northern in Havre, Mont. against the University of Alberta on Thursday, Dec. 29. Game time is 4 p.m.
The University of Montana Western has launched a national search for the provost and vice chancellor for academic affairs position.