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UND (0-1) vs Montana (1-1) 11/15 7 PM


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Despite a decent defensive performance and outrebounding the Panthers, a cold shooting night prevented UND from getting win #1 on the season.  They look to try again against an old BSC rival in Montana.

About the Griz:

The Griz is one of the power programs in the Big Sky, as UND would remember during the time in the BSC.  Conference titles and NCAA tournament appearances were the expectation year in and year out.  Last year was a bit of a step back for the Griz as they finished in the middle of the pack.  There certainly was a reason why, the Griz were super young!  Spoiler alert, they are still are young.   However, they are a well coached unit and they are talented and are ready to take the steps to get back to the top of the conference. It is a team that will play tough defense that will force turnovers and will slash you to pieces on the offensive side of the ball.  Plus having a year of experience will certainly be helpful.  Are the Griz ready to jump back into the top?  Or... are they still too young. 

About Travis DeCuire (8th year: 143-85 record, 92-37 BSC record)

The Griz alum is in his 8th season at the helm and has shown that someone you can go home again.  Has led Montana to 3 BSC regular season crowns and two trips to the NCAA tournament.  The only thing missing right now is an NCAA win, but he certainly has kept the Griz program near the top of the Big Sky.  Last year was a bump in the road and looking to bounce back to the top.  The only question worth asking is how long does DeCuire stick around before another team come calling?  He has turn down offers to stay in Missoula, but continued success might give him an opportunity too good to pass up.

Key Player: Brandon Whitney (6'1 Sophomore Guard)

The one thing Montana always seems to have is great guard play: Cherry, Jamar, Rorie, Oguine, and Pridgett just to name a few.  This young sophomore might be the next one up.  He had a nice freshman year, averaging 10 points and 3 assists for the Griz and now is looking to have an even bigger 2nd year.  One way he can do that is to improve his 3 point shooting (31.1% last year) and his free throw percentage (72.8%).  A jump in production will help the Griz rise to the top of the standings and start the discussion of whether Whitney will be added to these great Griz guards. 

Series History:

Griz Lead the all time series 19-6, including  13-2 mark in D1. UNDs 2 wins came in Grand Forks.  


1) Defend the ball screen

2) Get the shooters going

3) Feed the bigs and crash the boards

4) Take care of the ball

The Call:  

This is a Griz squad that is still trying to prove itself and not one of the classic Griz squads that UND has seen.  That being said, UND is going to have a tough matchup because they are still figuring themselves out.  If this was in Missoula, I think the Griz would win this game by 10.  However, this is in Grand Forks so I think UND has a chance to get a nice non-conference win.  UND needs to continue to grow and gel as a team.  I think they shoot the ball much better and rebound well... but I think the Griz do just enough to win.  However, this was a Griz squad that had some trouble closing games, so keep that in mind.

Griz 75-72

Game is on the Plus

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