Griz Draw Wisconsin in First Round of NCAA Tourney

By Beacon Staff

MISSOULA – The University of Montana has big momentum and a little inside knowledge going into the NCAA men’s basketball tournament.

The Grizzlies (25-6) were seeded 13th and drew fourth seed Wisconsin (24-9) as their first round opponent Thursday. The game tips off at 12:10 p.m. Mountain in Albuquerque, N.M.

Montana takes a 14-game winning streak into the tournament and the knowledge of assistant coach Freddie Owens, who played at Wisconsin for coach Bo Ryan from 2001-2004. Owens hit the game-winning shot against Tulsa to propel the Badgers into the Sweet 16 in 2003.

Griz players Will Cherry and Derek Selvig are familiar with the Badgers from watching them on TV.

Cherry says they’re tough on defense, their big players play like Selvig and Mathias Ward and guard Jordan Taylor runs the show.

Owens says containing Taylor and matching Wisconsin’s intensity are going to be keys for Montana.

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