LCSC men fall to Montana Tech 91-73
BUTTE, Mont. - The Lewis-Clark State College men's basketball coaching staff hoped the team had turned a corner following a tough exhibition loss to Seattle University on Thursday night.
However, that corner looked like it led to a dead-end street on Sunday afternoon after the Warriors suffered a 91-73 nonleague setback to fellow Frontier Conference foe Montana Tech.
The loss was the third straight for LCSC, 3-4 overall, while Montana Tech improved to 5-5.
The 91 points is the most allowed by LCSC this season and the Warriors also committed 21 turnovers, the third time this season they've had 20 or more turnovers in a game.
"We uncharacteristically turned the ball over and they handled our pressure," LCSC assistant coach Tim Collins said, adding that the turnovers led to several fastbreak opportunities for the Orediggers.
Montana Tech never trailed in the game, opening with a 7-0 run and eventually going up 12 early at 18-6. The Warriors fought their way back into it and cut the margin to 23-19, but LCSC would get no closer the rest of the way.
After LCSC cut the margin to four, the Orediggers responded with an 11-0 run and rolled to a 34-19 lead. The margin remained around 15 points for the rest of the half as the Orediggers held a 45-31 halftime lead. Montana Tech did most of its damage next to the basket with all but five field goals being scored from less than 10 feet away.
Montana Tech then put an end to any comeback thoughts by LCSC as it opened the second half with a 7-0 run to take a 52-31 lead. The Warriors never got closer than 15 the rest of the way.
LCSC finished the game 28-of-60 from the field for 46.7 percent, and 7-of-20 from the 3-point line for 35 percent. Montana Tech was 32-of-62 from the field for 51 percent and 7-of-21 on 3-pointers, 33.3 percent. Tech also held a 36-32 rebounding edge and an 8-4 advantage in steals.
The Warriors again were without the services of junior point guard JR Gordon, who is nursing a bad back. It is unknown when he will again see action.
"Having JR out hurts us because we only have one true point guard right now," Collins said. "Going into the season we thought one of our strengths was our depth, with the possible exception at point guard. But we're told he's doing better. We'll just have to see when we can get him back at practice."
Curtis Allen led the Warriors with 20 points on 9-of-19 shooting from the field. He also had four rebounds and three assists. Tanner McIntosh had 11 points and a team-high six rebounds, while Brian Duckworth added 10 points.
Montana Tech had four players in double figures, led by Dirk Anderson's 16 points and seven rebounds. Stephan Thomas added 14 points, five rebounds and nine assists, while Tony Trudnowski had 12 points and Cole Conway finished with 11.
The two teams will meet again twice in conference play, starting in January.
Next up for the Warrior men is one of just two home games during December. LCSC plays host to Walla Walla University on Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. at the LCSC Activity Center. LCSC also will play host to Walla Walla University on Jan. 3, and will meet Cascade College on Dec. 28 at 7 p.m. in its other home game this month.