Pokes Face Falcons on Tuesday

Feb. 1, 2016


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The University of Wyoming men's basketball team faces its second-straight Tuesday road game at Air Force tomorrow. The Cowboys (11-12, 4-6 MW) earned a 64-52 home win on Jan. 6 in the first meeting between the two this season, while the Falcons (10-12, 1-8 MW) haven't won in their seven games since. Tip is set for 7 p.m. MT in Clune Arena, where Wyoming is 2-2 in its last four trips.

Fans can follow live stats, audio and video of the contest through the gameday central page on GoWYO.com. The contest will be televised by ROOT Sports (Charter: 523, DirecTV: 659) and broadcast on the radio by the Cowboy Sports Network.

A Look at the Matchup
Head coach Larry Shyatt and the Pokes moved up to eighth in the Mountain West standings at 11-12 overall and 4-6 in league play after an 83-76 Border War win over Colorado State last Saturday. The Cowboys were tied with the Rams at halftime, but opened the second half with a 21-6 run to capture a fourth-straight victory over CSU for the first time since 2002-03. Wyoming shot 49 percent (27-of-55) from the field, 32 percent (9-of-28) beyond the arc and 71 percent (20-of-28) at the free-throw line to amass its second-most points this season. Colorado State made 42 percent (26-of-62), 39 percent (7-of-18) and 57 percent (17-of-30), respectively. The Rams won the battle on the boards, 45-31, but their six assists and zero steals were season lows for a Cowboy opponent. Conversely, the Pokes had a season-low two turnovers, their fewest since 2012, and a season-high five blocks. On the season, Wyoming averages 69.6 points on 43 percent from the field and 36 percent from deep. The Cowboys rank third in the conference from three, while their 9.2 triples per game are second in the MW and 29th in the NCAA. Their 73 percent at the free-throw line is second in the league and 55th in the nation. Defensively, Wyoming allows 70.4 points on 42 and 33 percent, respectively. Wyoming's 18.0 fouls per game are third in the conference and 78th nationally.

Head coach Dave Pilipovich and Air Force are 11th in the Mountain West at 10-12 overall and 1-8 in conference play. The Falcons have lost eight-straight games, including six by double figures. Most recently AF dropped a 75-54 game at San Jose State last Saturday. The Spartans opened on an 18-3 run and led 39-24 at halftime, before a SJSU layup with 13:01 left extended the lead to 20. Air Force cut the deficit to 61-47, but the Falcons never got within 14 the rest of the way. The Falcons shot just 29 percent (16-of-56) from the field and 24 percent (5-of-21) from deep, while allowing 46 and 39, respectively, to the Spartans. Overall, Air Force scores 67.6 points per game on 42 percent from the field and 33 percent beyond the arc. Defensively the Falcon's allow opponents to hit 43 percent from the field and 35 percent beyond the arc. Air Force has a minus 3.0 rebounding margin and plus 0.5 turnover margin.

Each Team's Leaders
Senior guard Josh Adams notched a game-high 28 points, including 26 in the second half, against Colorado State last Saturday to move to seventh all-time at UW in scoring. His 25.1 points per game lead the MW and rank fifth in the NCAA, as he also paces the Pokes at 5.6 rebounds and 3.7 assists. Adams' 2.9 triples per game also lead the conference and are 42nd nationally, while his 37 percent from deep is fourth in the league. Three other Pokes also reached double figures against Colorado State, as Wyoming improved to 5-0 this season when four players score at least 10. Junior guard Jason McManamen chipped in 19 points and tied a career high with five triples. His 12.8 points per game are 13th in the MW, while his team-best 42 percent beyond the arc is second and his 2.5 triples per game are third. Sophomore forward Alan Herndon added 10 points, four rebounds, two steals and tied a career high with three blocks. Freshman guard Justin James came off the bench for 10 points and two assists.

Junior forward Hayden Graham leads the Falcons at 14.4 points and 6.3 rebounds per game. He is ninth in the MW in scoring and 10th in boards, while his 50 percent from the field is second and his 35.6 minutes per game trail only Adams' 37.1. He had six points and five rebounds against the Spartans. Sophomore guard Trevor Lyons is Air Force's other scorer in double figures at 12.7 per game, but he had just two points against SJSU. He adds a team-high 2.7 assists per game, while his 1.4 steals per contest are sixth in the MW. Junior guard Zach Kocur had 13 points at San Jose State and averages 9.0 per game. Sophomore center Frank Toohey came off the bench for a team-high 17 points versus the Spartans.

About the Series
The Pokes lead the Falcons in the all-time series, 75-35, including 31-20 in Colorado Springs. Wyoming's last visit was a 73-50 loss on Feb. 7, 2015, as the Cowboys were without the services of Herndon and Larry Nance Jr. due to illness. Wyoming's last win in Clune was a 66-59 victory on Jan. 22, 2014, that Shyatt missed due to illness. The Pokes are 5-5 against AF under Shyatt.

Up Next
Wyoming hosts Utah State on Saturday at 4 p.m. MT. Tickets can be purchased by calling the Wyoming Athletics Ticket Office at 877-WYO-FAN1 (877-996-3261) or online at GoWYO.com.