Eagle women cruise by Lady Griz 60-46 - SWX Right Now-Sports for Spokane, CdA, Tri-Cities, WA

Eagle women cruise by Lady Griz 60-46

EWU Athletics

Missoula, Mont. ­– The Eastern Washington University women's basketball team rebounded to the tune of a 60-46 victory over Big Sky Conference foe Montana, on Saturday (Jan. 7).

Senior Tisha Phillips and Junior Delaney Hodgins were red-hot from the field, combining for 37 points on a 67 percent clip. Phillips led the team with 20 points, while Hodgins was right behind her with 17.

"I thought today was a gutsy win for us," said head coach Wendy Schuller.

"Thursday's loss was tough to handle, and physically we were a bit beat up. I thought we had several players who stepped up and fought through some pain, and really played well to help us get this win."

The first quarter got off to a great start with the Eagles doubling the score of the Grizzlies, 24-12, while Phillips led the charge with 10 first quarter points off 4-of-4 shooting.  

Defensively Eastern played a consistent game, keeping UM's offense limited and forcing 10 turnovers in each half. With less than three minutes remaining in the contest, Eastern did not hesitate to put away Montana. Leading 53-44, EWU closed out with a 7-0 run that shut the door on any thoughts of a comeback UM might have had.

"It is never easy to win at Montana, they have unbelievable fans and we found ourselves in a position today where we had to fight off some runs Montana made and that their fans got behind. It was good to see us get through those situations," said Schuller.

Win-Loss Records: Eastern Washington improves to 7-7 and a 2-1 in the Big Sky, while Montana falls to 3-12 and 0-4 in league play.

What It Means: EWU continues its schedule and transitions back home with a winning record in the conference and a dominant victory over a Big Sky rival.

Turning Point: The game began with a 16-4 Eagle run that lasted nearly five minutes, and kept the Grizzlies in a deficit they were never able to climb out of. After that first quarter, the closest Montana ever got was to a five-point deficit in the third quarter.

Key Stats: The Eagles posted a solid field goal percentage of 47.3 percent, while keeping the Grizzlies to just 34.5 percent. Eastern also forced 20 turnovers, leading to 20 points off the takeaways. UM only collected eight points off the EWU turnovers.

Top Performers: Tisha Phillips came through with an efficient day, scoring 20 points on 8-of-12 field goal shooting. She also dished out a team-leading four assists and stole the ball four times.

Delaney Hodgins continues her scoring pace with 17 points and five rebounds off a 7-of-12 mark from the field.

Senior Ashli Payne led the team with eighth rebounds, while also collecting three assists and two steals.

Notables: Junior Delaney Hodgins extends her double-digit scoring streak to 31 games. The streak is currently the longest active in the Big Sky.  

With 11 steals in the game, Eastern has now posted double-digit steals in eight of their last 10 games.

Tisha Phillips recorded her fourth-straight game with double-digits points after her 20 today.

With two 3-point field goals, Eastern extended its streak of games with at least one 3-pointer made to 316.

What's Next: The Eagles return home to Reese Court to face-off against Idaho State on Thursday (Jan. 12) starting at 6:05 p.m. Pacific Time.

For more information on the Eastern Washington women's basketball team, follow @EWUWBB on Twitter and Instagram or like EWU women's basketball on Facebook.

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