Lady Jackets to play for GNAC Tourney title - KTVQ.com | Q2 | Continuous News Coverage | Billings, MT

Lady Jackets to play for GNAC Tourney title

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Two big middle offensive quarters combined with stellar defense propelled MSUB's basketball women to a 78-60 win over Western Washington Friday night in the GNAC Tournament semifinals. The win vaults MSUB in to Saturday's championship game.

Four Yellowjackets scored double-digit points and MSUB came up huge on the glass in the conference win. Alisha Breen led all players with 23 points and 10 rebounds. Janiel Olson was just shy of a double-double with 10 points and nine rebounds. Point guard Rylee Kane had 11 points, six assists, and a game-high five steals. Monica Grimsrud scored 11 points, pulled in six rebounds, made four assists and had two blocks.

MSUB was down 7-0 in the first three minutes, but rebounded offensively after. The Yellowjackets opened the second quarter with 12 straight points and after a 33-23 lead at half-time, continued the offensive onslaught with nine more unanswered.

Montana State University Billings (21-9) held Western Washington to 37.5 percent shooting (7-24) while shooting 45.2 percent (28-62) for the game. MSUB was clutch off the glass, winning the battle 44-33, including 16-13 on offensive grabs.

Western Washington’s (20-9) Taylor Peacocke finished with 17 points and Kiana Gandy had 16. Kayla Bernsen finished with a team-high nine rebounds and added in eight points and four blocks.

The Vikings opened the game with seven straight points. 

Out of a timeout, Breen passed behind the back to Grimsrud drained a three. Marissa Van Atta followed with a difficult jump shot in traffic before Kane finished with a steal and lay-up.

MSUB opened the second quarter with a 12-0 run and never looked back.

The Yellowjackets outscored WWU 36-26 in the paint and scored 26 points off turnovers. MSUB also earned more second chance points, 17-13, and points from the bench, 15-8.

The GNAC Championship game is set for Saturday at 8:30 p.m. Mountain Time, with the winner earning an automatic berth to the NCAA National Tournament.

The women’s championship game will air live on GNAC.tv. In addition, the game will be played live on the American Sports Network (KULR-2 (SWX-Billings)) at 8:30 p.m. Mountain time.

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