MSU Volleyball v. Idaho State (copy) (copy)

Montana State's Hannah Scott goes up for a kill in 2018 at Shroyer Gym.

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Hannah Scott put an exclamation point on a career performance, knocking down the match winner to guide Montana State to a 23-25, 25-21, 25-20, 16-25, 15-10 win over Idaho State on Saturday night in Shroyer Gym.

Scott, an outside hitter from Hawthorne, California, recorded a career-high 25 kills while notching a .286 attack mark, 11 digs and two blocks.

“Hannah had a big-time match,” MSU head coach Daniel Jones said. “She got us over the finish line and was almost unstoppable at times.”

Montana State (5-2, 5-2 Big Sky) jumped out early, taking a 10-4 lead following an Idaho State (4-5, 2-5) ball-handling error. The Bobcats held a 19-15 advantage heading down the stretch after a Hailey Merkes kill, but ISU responded with a 7-0 run and built its lead to 24-20. The Bobcats fought back with three straight points, but ISU’s Taylor Meeks closed out the set with a kill.

“I was very impressed with Idaho State,” Jones said. “Their conference record is not indicative of how good they play. Idaho State is a scrappy team, and they don’t let anything die. I give them a tip of the hat for their effort.”

MSU got out quickly in the second stanza, opening with a 10-3 lead after a Merkes kill. The Bobcats held the advantage throughout the frame as ISU pulled to within two points on two occasions down the stretch before back-to-back Scott kills gave MSU the win. Scott notched eight kills to pace the Bobcats in the second set.

The third set featured three ties and two lead changes, with MSU taking charge at 21-19. Again, it was Scott with back-to-back kills that gave the Bobcats a 2-1 advantage in the match.

Tied at nine in the fourth set, MSU lost its momentum as ISU used a strong service game to get the Bobcats on their heels. An ISU ace by Sadie Gardner gave the Bengals a 20-13 cushion, and ISU finished the set on an ace by Andri Dewey. ISU had four aces in the set.

“They put a lot of pressure on us with their serve,” Jones said. “That allowed them to take away a lot of our strengths.”

Both teams exchanged points in the early going of the final set. This was before Montana State rattled off a 4-0 run sparked by a Kira Thomsen kill, a Merkes ace and a block by Avery Turnage and Jourdain Klein. Following an ISU timeout, the Bobcats maintained the lead and used a 3-0 run late after a couple of Bengal miscues to set up the winning kill by Scott.

“At the end of the day, we had enough strength to overcome what they threw at us,” Jones said. “Our .202 hitting percentage doesn’t exactly set water on fire, but I’m proud we were able to finish out with the win.

“We need to do a better job offensively with our decision making,” he added.

Thomsen and Klein had 14 and 10 kills, respectively. Delaney Shearan and Allie Lynch dished out 33 and 16 assists to guide the MSU offense.

Defensively, four Bobcats reached double-digit digs, led by Alexis Goroski with a match-high 23 saves. Thomsen added 14 digs, while Scott and Shearan had 11 apiece. Emma Pence and Klein led MSU at the net, combining for 14 blocks.

MSU will host Idaho State at 5 p.m. Sunday.

“We’ll test ourselves again tomorrow,” Jones said. “We will have to do better in serve-receive, but these kids take a lot of pride in their craft and I’m sure they’ll be ready to go.”

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Colton Pool can be reached at cpool@dailychronicle.com or 406-582-2690. Follow him on Twitter @CPoolReporter.