Women’s basketball has successful run in Montana

By Grace Pohl, Staff Writer

EWU women’s basketball reigned first place in the Big Sky Conference after beating Montana State University, 81-69, and remained in the top spot with a win over University of Montana, 67-65. The Eagles improved to 7-0 in conference and 13-6 overall.

Eastern was in control for the majority of the basketball game against the former No. 1, and 6-0 Montana State. They went into halftime up by 2 points and did not let up going into the second half of the game.

The Eagles turned the ball over 12 times, and MSU turned the ball over 13 times. Eastern dominated in total rebounds with 38 total and 14 of them on offense. EWU shot 50 percent from the field and behind the 3-point arc.

Guard Hayley Hodgins was the star of the game, leading the team in scoring with 34 points, a new career high. Hodgins also increased her double-digit scoring streak to 34 games. She is 176 points behind Eastern’s all-time NCAA Division I lead scorer and would need to average 13.5 points in all remaining games to be able to break the record.

Guard Tisha Phillips and forward Delaney Hodgins both added to the scoring effort with 13 points and five rebounds each.
“Montana State is a really good team. We made a lot of shots and that helped. We played really, really hard and were brought into the game plan. I think we’re clicking now offensively,” said head coach Wendy Schuller to goeags.com. “It’s fun to coach this team. I told them, ‘When you play as hard as we just played, you’re going to have great results.’”

The next obstacle was against the University of Montana, when the Eagles were trailing for most of the game. UM led for 32:37 of the game while EWU led for 4:02. The Eagles went into halftime down by one point, and trailed as many as 14 points in the second half.

EWU scored 12 points off 11 turnovers while the Grizzlies scored 15 points off 13 turnovers. UM also dominated in rebounds with a total of 38, including 14 offensive rebounds. EWU had 29 rebounds and five of them were offensive.

Both Hayley and Delaney Hodgins took control of the game. Hayley Hodgins racked up 26 points while Delaney Hodgins scored 21, helping contribute to the 13 lead changes in the game.

Even though the Grizzlies won the rebounding battle and letd for a majority of the game, the Eagles battled back. With less than 20 seconds left and the game tied, Delaney Hodgins made the game-winning shot with 0.9 seconds left after rebounding a missed shot from Hayley Hodgins.

The Eagles will go on to play at Portland State University on Jan. 28 to defend their No. 1 spot atop the conference.