Montana, EWU meet in Big Sky semis

No. 6 seed Montana (15-12, 9-9) vs. No. 2 seed Eastern Washington (14-7, 13-3)

Big Sky Conference Tourney Semifinals, Idaho Central Arena, Boise, Idaho; Friday, 10 p.m. EST

BOTTOM LINE: Montana is set to take on Eastern Washington with the winner securing its spot in the Big Sky championship game. Eastern Washington swept the two-game regular season series. The teams last met on Feb. 20, when the Eagles shot 48.3 percent from the field while limiting Montana to just 43.9 percent en route to a 90-76 victory.

TALE OF TWO ROSTERS: Eastern Washington has relied on senior leadership this year while Montana has been fueled heavily by freshmen. Seniors Tanner Groves, Kim Aiken Jr. and Jacob Davison have collectively scored 48 percent of Eastern Washington’s points this season. On the other side, freshmen Josh Bannan, Brandon Whitney and Robby Beasley III have combined to score 38 percent of the team’s points this year.OUTSTANDING OWENS: Kyle Owens has connected on 43.2 percent of the 44 3-pointers he’s attempted and has made 4 of 11 over the last five games. He’s also made 75.6 percent of his foul shots this season.

UNBEATEN WHEN: Eastern Washington is a perfect 7-0 when it holds an opponent to 64 points or fewer. The Eagles are 7-7 when opponents score more than 64 points.

ASSIST-TO-FG RATIO: The Eagles have recently created baskets via assists more often than the Grizzlies. Eastern Washington has an assist on 46 of 75 field goals (61.3 percent) over its previous three games while Montana has assists on 37 of 81 field goals (45.7 percent) during its past three games.

DID YOU KNOW: Eastern Washington has made 8.7 3-pointers per game as a team this year, which is second-best among Big Sky teams.


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