The University of Montana men’s basketball team narrowly defeated the Idaho Vandals in 67-63 win on Saturday night, Jan. 18, 2020 at Dahlberg Arena. The win marked the Griz’s 1,000th home victory in program history. Montana is now 6-1 in the Big Sky Conference.  

Going into the game, the Vandals had a 1-4 conference mark. They played a strong game, trailing close behind the Griz throughout the whole event.

The Griz ran into their largest deficit early in the game at 9-4, but quickly came back with a 9-point run. Griz hit a game-high 9-point lead with about five minutes left in the second half at 57-48. 

In the final minute, the Vandals came back, making it a 61-59 point game. University of Montana forward Jared Samuelson pulled through with a slam dunk for the Griz. The shot marked Samuelson’s career-high 23rd point of the game.

Montana led with 4 points and less than 20 seconds left, but the Vandals played competitively, scoring a 3-pointer with only about three seconds left in the game. 

University of Montana forward Kyle Owens got fouled on the inbound and scored Griz their final 2 points in the game, hitting both free throws. The Griz maintain their first place ranking in the Big Sky Conference with this win.

The Grizzlies will play again on Thursday, Jan. 23, 2020 at 7 p.m. in Pocatello facing off against the Idaho State Bengals.