Print and Go Back ESPN.com: College Basketball Nation [Print without images]

Friday, December 10, 2010
Montana avoids UCLA-like letdown

By Diamond Leung

After Montana beat UCLA on Sunday coach Wayne Tinkle used the Bruins as an example. The Grizzlies were coming home to play an unheralded NAIA school and Tinkle wanted to make sure there was no letdown after Montana's 66-57 win in Pauley Pavilion.

"We talked about the scenario where UCLA went from Kansas to home against a team they thought they were going to be able to walk through -- we used all those analogies - and all in all, I think (the Griz) passed with flying colors," Tinkle told The Missoulian.

Montana ended up beating Great Falls 85-50 in front of 2,641, an attendance figure that Tinkled called "disappointing" following the UCLA win.

But the Grizzlies (5-3) are intent on generating their own buzz after their showing in Los Angeles and when a come-from-behind win in the Big Sky championship game last season landed them in the NCAA tournament.

Anthony Johnson's 42-point performance against Weber State in that game is legendary, and while he graduated, the tone for the program's confidence was set.

It's now the UCLA win that has resulted in a highlight tape being released by Montana, with Will Cherry and Brian Qvale being the stars of this year's show.