March 10, 2014
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. -
Wyoming's Larry Nance Jr. has been named to the All-Mountain West First Team and All-Defensive Team, as the conference announced the awards Monday. The junior forward is the first Cowboy to earn All-MW First Team since Brandon Ewing in 2008-09, while his All-Defensive honor marks the third-straight year a Cowboy has earned the accolade. The awards are voted on by the league's head coaches and media.
A native of Akron, Ohio, Nance was one of the top big men in the conference before suffering a season-ending torn ACL against Fresno State on Feb. 18. At the time of his injury, he ranked 11th in the MW at 14.5 points per game, eighth with 7.8 rebounds, second at 50.4 percent from the field, third with 1.7 steals, second at 2.8 blocks and first with 37.9 minutes. He led the Cowboys in each of those categories and was the only player in the conference to rank in the top 10 in steals, blocks and defensive rebounds. An opposing big man (forward or center) earned a double-double against Wyoming in just three of Nance's 13 MW games, while he did not foul out of a conference game. Nance scored in double figures 11 times during MW play with two 20-point efforts and three double-doubles. He hit game-winning shots at Boise State on Jan. 11 and against Nevada on Jan. 25 with less than five seconds left on the clock in each contest and earned MW Player of the Week twice during league play. The All-MW honors are the first of Nance's career.
Nance is complemented by Cowgirl junior forward Kayla Woodward, who was named to the All-MW Women's First Team on Sunday. The duo represents the first Cowboy and Cowgirl to earn all-conference first team accolades in the same season since Ashley Elliott and Jay Straight in 2004-05.
The Cowboys open play at the 2014 Reese's Mountain West Championships against UNLV on Thursday at 3:30 p.m. MT in the Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas.