An overpowering offensive performance by Montana was too much for the Hawaii men’s basketball team, which fell 94-79 in a BracketBusters game in Missoula, Mont., today.
Guard Kareem Jamar had a triple-double of 21 points, 11 rebounds and 11 assists and the Grizzlies of the Big Sky Conference (20-6) shot 57.9 percent, including 47.8 percent on 3-pointers. Their scoring total and field-goal percentage were season highs allowed by UH (15-11).
It was a difficult way to start a 10-day, three-game road trip for the ‘Bows, who shot a respectable 49.1 percent but could not match the Grizzlies shot for shot; UM hit 11 from long range and UH went only 19-for-34 (55.9 percent) at the foul line.
Center Vander Joaquim led UH with 17 points and 10 rebounds. Point guard Shaquille Stokes added 13 points off the bench and forward Hauns Brereton chipped in 12. Joston Thomas scored 11, but was ejected with 3 minutes left on a frustration clear-out foul.
Montana won its ninth straight game and earned its third straight 20-win season while improving to 11-2 at Dahlberg Arena. Besides Jamar’s all-around game, guard Will Cherry supplied a game-high 24 points on 10-for-13 shooting and made five steals.
UH twice got it under double digits in the second half on a 3 by Zane Johnson (eight points on 3-for-10 shooting) and a dunk by Joaquim.
But Cherry scored six straight points to push the lead back to 16 with 15 minutes left, and Montana maintained its lead from there.
The Grizzlies absolutely sizzled in the first half, connecting on eight of 15 3-point attempts (53.3 percent) and shot 56.7 percent overall in the period.
Combined with a UM defense that forced eight first-half turnovers on the ‘Bows, UH faced a 47-34 deficit at halftime.