Saturday's Game at Air Force Important Opportunity for Cowboys to Move up in MWC Standings

Feb. 15, 2008


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By winning three of its last five Mountain West Conference games, the Wyoming Cowboys have put themselves in a position to move up in the MWC standings this weekend. Wyoming is currently in eighth place in the conference, with a 3-7 MWC mark. UW trails Saturday's opponent Air Force (4-6 in the MWC), as well as TCU (4-6) by only one game. A win by the Cowboys on Saturday could move them into a tie for sixth place in the MWC standings. In addition to Saturday's head-to-head matchup between Wyoming and Air Force, TCU will play at New Mexico Saturday evening.

This week's game between the Pokes and Falcons will tip off at 4 p.m., Mountain Time, and will be televised live on The Mtn. The Cowboy Sports Network radio broadcast will begin at 3:30 p.m. with the pregame show. Wyoming has a 10-13 overall record this season, while Air Force is 12-11 overall.

The Pokes are coming off an 18-point home win (72-54) last Wednesday over TCU. Earlier this season, UW lost by two points (62-64) in overtime to Air Force in Laramie.

This Saturday's meeting will mark the 95th in the series between the Front Range rivals. Wyoming leads the overall series 68-26, and leads the MWC series 12-8.

Wyoming will be looking for its first win at the Air Force Academy since Feb. 17, 2003. The Cowboys won that 2003 meeting 64-57. Since that time, Wyoming lost by 12 (71-83) in 2004, by five (56-61) in 2005, by one (61-62) in 2006, and last year -- without starters Brandon Ewing, Brad Jones and Joseph Taylor, who were all suspended following a fighting incident at New Mexico in the game immediately preceding the Air Force game -- lost by 45 (43-88) at the Academy.

In their last six games this season, the Wyoming Cowboys have won four of those six games for their most successful stretch of the 2007-08 season.

Wyoming's backcourt of Brandon Ewing and Brad Jones combined for a season high 39 points on Wednesday, Feb. 13 versus TCU. Ewing scored 20, and Jones added 19 in Wyoming's 72-54 win over the Horned Frogs. Ewing's and Jones' previous combined high this season was 38 points in a 69-64 road win at Utah on Jan. 30, 2008. In the victory at Utah, Ewing scored 21 and Jones added 17.

The last time Wyoming and Air Force met, Ewing and Jones combined for 37 of Wyoming's 62 points in the 62-64 overtime loss in Laramie. Ewing scored 21 in that game, while Jones had 16.

Freshman center Mikhail Linskens played a near perfect game in his last outing versus TCU on Feb. 13. Linskens was a perfect six of six from the field, including a perfect two of two from three-point range for 14 points. He also grabbed six rebounds and blocked a career high four shots in 23 minutes of play.

Cowboy senior forward Joseph Taylor is nearing the Top 10 in Wyoming school history in blocked shots. Taylor currently has blocked 72 career shots. That is only three shy of 10th place in school history. He is chasing former Cowboy Ronell Mingo, who blocked 75 shots during his career from 2000-02.

Following Wyoming's game at Air Force on Saturday, the Cowboys will return home to host San Diego State on Tuesday, Feb. 19.