Dillon, Mont. – The No.13 Montana Western Bulldogs (21-6, 11-4) made a late season statement throttling Lewis-Clark State College (20-8, 10-6) 95-66 Saturday night at the Straugh Gymnasium.
In a tale of two halves, the Bulldogs pulled away in the second half, and trampled the Warriors.
The Bulldogs were able to build a couple of double digit leads in a chippy first half. But the Warriors kept bringing it back to a single possession game, as they shot 44 percent in the half. The Bulldogs managed to take a nine point lead heading into halftime.
The Warriors had no answer for the Bulldogs in the second half. As the Bulldogs shot 63 percent from the field, while the Warriors went cold in the second, shooting just 28 percent as the Bulldogs stormed away with a 29 point victory.
The Bulldogs got great games from Shyke Smalls (Great Falls, Mont) who had 22 points four rebounds and two steals. Kooper Kidgell (Billings, Mont.) 21 points and four assists and three rebounds. Dom Robinson (Tacoma, Wash.) 19 points, four assists, and Zaccheus Darko-Kelly (Missoula, Mont.) 15 points, three rebounds, and 2 assists.
The Bulldog close out the home portion of their schedule Saturday night Feb. 18 against Montana Tech Tip-off is set for 7:30 P.M.
Two seniors, Chase Haack and Shyke Smalls, will be recognized in a special senior night ceremony following the game.
- Head coach Steve Keller won his 200th Career game with the Bulldogs.
- Shyke Smalls added two more steals and continues to lead the nation with 67.
- Casey Ryter (Hamilton, Mont.) and Sage Fadness (Boulder, Mont.) scored their first career collegiate points.
- A crazy sequence of events late in the first half resulted in three technical fouls being called. Dom Robinson dove for a loose ball, and in the process tripped Ty Higbie, who fell to the ground. Higbie's fall caused Shyke Smalls to fall and as Smalls was trying to get up, Higbie started to shove Smalls. Higbie was called for a technical as the teams gathered together and stated to talk and yell, and push. Smalls was then given a technical foul for talking back to Higbie. In the scrum and all the talk Doug McDaniel was hit with a technical for touching an official.
- Late in the second half, Kooper Kidgell had a fast break dunk taken away. After the dunk, and as the ball was falling through the net, Kidgell let go of the rim, causing the ball to bounce back out of the rim. The ball was clearly through the cylinder, however after a lengthy discussion, the officials waived off the basket. In the end it didn't matter as Shyke Smalls grabbed the rebound and was fouled, and he made both free throw attempts.