Grizzlies fall victim to Bulldog treys in tournament championship
by Chris Day
CANYON, Texas— The Southwestern Oklahoma State University Bulldogs remained perfect on the young season as they made 13 treys while receiving a 11-point, 14-rebound effort from junior center Nate Perry en-route to an 84-69 Saturday night win over the Adams State College Grizzlies in the championship game of the Holiday Inn/Coca Cola Buffalo Thanksgiving Classic held in West Texas A&M University’s First United Bank Center.
The Bulldogs, now 4-0 on the season, received a game-high 18 points from sophomore forward Jose Garcia, who hit all four of his attempts from beyond the arc. Clarke Hale, 3-for-7 from long distance, was also in double figures with 13 points.
The Grizzlies, now 1-3, shot a solid 50.0 percent (21 of 42) from the field and were paced by a solid 17-point, 8-rebound effort from senior forward Roman Moniak (Sacramento, Calif.). Guards David Hull (Belen, N.M.) and Marcus Mortensen (Cortez, Colo.) were also in double-digits with 16 and 13 points, respectively.
The Bulldogs never trailed and used a deadly 13 of 30 (43.3 percent) effort from 3-point territory to post the victory. They also grabbed 15 offensive rebounds, which translated into 21 points, while shooting at a 47.5 percent (29 of 61) clip from the field.
Leading by no more than six for most of the first half, the Bulldogs used a 6-0 run over the final 1:10 of the period to build a 43-34 edge. Adams State closed to within four on a Moniak trey at the 18:55 mark of the second half before a 17-8 extend run sparked by a Eric Payne 3-pointer gave the Lone Star Conference representatives a 61-48 lead with 11:45 to go.
The Grizzlies pulled within six less than four minutes later on Wes Jensen (Molalla, Ore.) and Hull 3-pointers moments before a 9-0 Bulldog run put the game away.
Perry, who had five offensive rebounds, also recorded four assists, two blocked shots and two steals while hitting 3 of 4 from the field and 5 of 6 from the line. Garcia, a native of Luanda, Angola, was 6 of 12 from the floor.
The host Buffaloes, who saw a 19-game home-court winning streak snapped by the Grizzlies on Friday, defeated Ouchita Baptist (Ark.) 83-65 in the tournament’s consolation game on Saturday afternoon. Buff senior Damien Lolar scored a school-record 47 points to lead the effort.
Adams State will briefly return home before heading to St. George, Utah for three games at Dixie State’s Tournament. The Grizzlies will begin that tournament at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday against the host Rebels, a team that claimed a 66-55 win over the Grizzlies last weekend in Alamosa.
All of the Grizzlies’ games can be heard on KSPK-FM (103.5 in Alamosa) and via the internet at www.kspk.com.