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Bears claw to a double OT win
By Bi Yu posted 12/3/14

Stanford rush courtFirst year Montana Coach Travis DeGuire had his team revved up coming to Berkeley to face the Cal Golden Bears.  This is the first time Coach DeGuire entered Haas Pavilion as an opponent, after the last six years as the assistant coach at Cal under Mike Montgomery.  This was a perfect opportunity for DeGuire, who was overlooked as Montgomery's aire, to show Cal his value on the sideline.

The Grizzlies, who on paper seemed inferior, pushed the Bears to double OT and had  Cal’s new Head Coach Cuonzo Martin sweating on the sideline before a 78-76 win.  

“I thought it was a hard fought game, both teams,” Coach Martin revealed. “They played hard they played physical they they got off to a great start.  I thought guys did a great job of handling adversity.” 

Cal coughed up 22 turnovers, which placed them in this precarious predicament, fighting from behind most of the game. Montana forced nine turnovers and was more active diving on the floor and beating Cal to the ball. When they kept the ball secure their shooting kept them in the game hitting 50-percent from the field and 41-percent from three.

Cal Wallace layupWith the Bears backs against the wall, down three and under a minute remaining, they clawed back when sophomore guard Jordon Mathews nailed a three with 17-second remaining to send the game to its first overtime at 67 each.  Cal was behind for the final 13-minutes of the game before that shot.  

The Grizzlies had an 8 point lead with 8:34 left in regulation.  Senior Jordan Gregory and junior forward Martin Breunig lead Montana with 23 points apiece.  Martin had an inside-outside presence shooting 8-of-17 from the field. Gregory also lead the Gizzlies in rebounds (12) from the guard position.

The game was competitive with 13 ties and niether team amassed a double-digit lead. Ultimatly it was Cal's defense that kept them in striking distance. They held Montana under 43-percent from the field and 28-percent from the arc. It was the Grizzlies missing free throws (11-of-23) that ultimately killed them. With 4-seconds remaining in the second overtime Gregory was fouled and sent to the line and missed two free throws that would have sent it to a third overtime.

Junior wingman Tyrone Wallace was the all-purpose player the Bears needed. He finished with career-high 15 rebounds, 22 points which ties his career high, and 5 assists.




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