Dec. 22, 2011
Pocatello, Idaho -
Junior guard Derrious Gilmore posted a career-high 18 points, including three treys in the final three minutes of the first half, to spark the University of Wyoming men's basketball team to an 80-56 rout of Idaho State on Thursday night in Holt Arena. The Cowboys (12-2) headed into halftime with a 10-point lead, before stepping up the defense and holding the Bengals (2-9) to 21 points in the second half.
Idaho State trailed the majority of the first half, but climbed within two at 33-31 with 3:43 to go. Gilmore hit three-straight shots from deep for nine of UW's final 12 points of the half to send UW into the break up 45-35. That's as close as the Bengals would come, as the Cowboy defense held ISU to nine points through the first 12 minutes of the second half to build an insurmountable lead.
"I'm really proud of our defense in the second half tonight," UW head coach Larry Shyatt said. "Our guys really hunkered down and played tough. They had only nine points through the first 12 minutes of the second half. Getting consecutive stops is how you win games."
Gilmore and the whole Cowboy bench played superb the whole night, outscoring the ISU bench 33-17. Redshirt junior guard Luke Martinez added 16 points and senior center Adam Waddell added 13 to help UW reach a season-high 80 points. Gilmore was 7-of-10 from the field, including 4-of-6 from deep, while Martinez went 4-of-7 behind the arc and Waddell was 6-of-7 from the field. Martinez and freshman forward Larry Nance Jr. both earned six rebounds.
"Our guards got in some early foul trouble in the game," Shyatt said. "Derrious and the rest of our bench did a great job of picking us up not only on the offensive end, but on defense as well. This is the most competitive game we have played from start to finish this season."
Wyoming shot 53 percent (29-of-54) for the game and 40 percent (9-of-22) from three to 31 percent (16-of-51) and 41 percent (7-of-17) for Idaho State. UW earned a 37-24 rebounding advantage and outscored the Bengals 32-14 in the paint.
After experiencing first-half struggles in the last several contests, the Cowboys put up 45 points in the opening frame on Thursday night for their second-highest point total of the first half this season. Wyoming built a lead through the first 10 minutes thanks to six quick points from senior guard Francisco Cruz and a three by Martinez. It looked like it would be a back-and-forth contest, though, as the UW starters got in foul trouble and ISU tied the game at 17-17 with 9:47 to go.
The Cowboy bench played excellent down the stretch in the first half, however. UW hit its next six shots, including two threes from Martinez, to surge back in front. The Bengals hit a trey of their own to come within two at 33-31 with 3:43 left, but Gilmore sank three treys as part of a 12-4 run in the final minutes to send UW to the locker room with a 45-35 lead.
Gilmore, whose previous career high was nine points, scored 13 in the first half, while Martinez added nine on three treys. Wyoming shot 59 percent (16-of-27) from the field and 60 percent (6-of-10) from deep compared to 34 percent (11-of-32) and 42 percent (6-of-14) for Idaho State. UW held a 19-9 advantage in bench points and 14-8 in points in the paint.
Wyoming continued the offensive surge in the second half, but cranked down the screws on defense as well. The Cowboys opened the second half with a 15-5 run through the first nine minutes, as the UW defense allowed ISU one basket on its first seven attempts. Back-to-back dunks from Waddell and Nance effectively broke the game open at the 13:40 mark to put UW up 17 at 55-38. The Cowboy bench stretched the lead to as many as 28 down the stretch.
Martinez scored seven points in the second half, while Waddell and Nance both added six, as the Cowboys earned a 20-8 advantage in rebounds.
Wyoming gets 11 days off before starting 2012 at Utah Valley on Jan. 3. Tip is set for 7:05 p.m. in Orem, Utah.