Matthews and Montana earn a dance at NCAA tournament


The Mirror

Virgil Matthews will get to experience the ultimate in college athletics. The 2001 Federal Way High School graduate will have the coveted opportunity of playing in the “Big Dance.”

Matthews’ University of Montana basketball team earned an automatic berth into the 2005 NCAA Tournament by winning the Big Sky Conference Tournament Wednesday night. The Grizzlies (18-12) downed Weber State, 63-61, in the final game at Portland’s Memorial Coliseum.

Montana will find out tomorrow — “Selection Sunday” — where and when they will play in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. According to, things aren’t going to be real easy for Matthews and his Montana squad. The Web site has the Grizzlies, who finished third during the Big Sky’s regular season, projected as a 16th seed and playing the No. 1-ranked Illinois Fighting Illini in the tournament’s first round in Indianapolis.

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