MISSOULA — After losing their last game, the Montana Lady Griz bounced back in a big way on Thursday evening in Dahlberg Arena as UM beat Seattle University 83-57 to improve to 8-2 on the season.
Carmen Gfeller scored 21 points to lead the Lady Griz while Katerina Tsineke added 18 points off of the bench. Freshman Haley Huard drew the start against Seattle and went 4-for-6 from deep en route to a 12-point performance.
"What worked tonight was being more focused and I'd say more relaxed mostly on offense," Tsineke said. "Having a great start from our first five (players) just gave me the energy and I just went off after their energy."
Offensively Montana struggled in the first half, shooting just 9-for-30 from the field and 3-for-15 from deep. But UM kicked it into gear in the third quarter thanks to back-to-back 3-pointers from Huard and Gfeller and quickly the lead ballooned for Montana.
Abby Anderson finished with nine points, nine rebounds, four steals and three blocks while Sophia Stiles added nine points, eight rebounds and seven assists. The Lady Griz finished shooting 43.5% from the field and 11-for-31 from 3-point range. They also out-rebounded Seattle 47 to 30.
"I knew we'd pick up the shooting. It was a matter of percentages for us," Lady Griz coach Brian Holsinger said. "We had a week in between games and we'd done a lot of practicing and they were just a little hesitant I think. At halftime I said don't worry about the shooting, it's going to happen. Don't worry about that. And I think that just relaxed them a little bit.
"Defensively, we were locked in pretty good but offensively right now we're not seeing things as quickly as I want them to and it's just a process. It's a process of a system, it's a process of the players understanding where to go with the ball. You hear me on the sideline sometimes saying, 'The corner, look at the corner,' so I'm having to tell them versus them just seeing it. That will come, and when that comes it's going to be good."
The Lady Griz (8-2, 2-0 Big Sky Conference) host Utah State (5-4) on Monday at 6 p.m. to wrap up nonconference play.