Cowboy Basketball Hosts North Florida on Thursday to Open U.S. Based Cancun Challenge Games

Nov. 17, 2010

LARAMIE, Wyo. -

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    Before traveling to Cancun next week for the Cancun Challenge, the Wyoming Cowboys will play a pair of United States based games as part of the challenge.

    The Pokes will host North Florida this Thursday night and Western Illinois this Saturday night. Thursday's game against the North Florida Ospreys will begin at 7 p.m. in the Arena-Auditorium.

    Cowboys Look to Bounce Back After Tough Loss, North Florida Looking for First Win:
    The Cowboys (1-1 overall) will be looking to bounce back following a tough loss at Northern Colorado (67-53) this past Tuesday night. North Florida (0-2 overall) will be looking for its first win of the 2010-11 season. They opened the year with a 75-55 loss at Florida State and then fell at No. 5 Pitt last Saturday 95-49.

    Wyoming and North Florida's Leaders:
    Through the first two games of the season, senior Djibril Thiam has been the Cowboys' top scorer with a 12.0 points per game average. Sophomore Brian Gibson leads the Pokes in rebounding and his 9.0 boards a game are tied for the third most in the Mountain West Conference. JayDee Luster is tied for sixth in the league with 5.0 assists a game.

    North Florida's lineup features two players who are averaging double figures in scoring--forward Andres Diaz (13.0 ppg) and guard Parker Smith (10.5 ppg). Diaz is also UNF's top rebounder with 5.5 per game.

    About North Florida:
    Thursday's game will mark the first ever meeting between the Wyoming Cowboys andthe North Florida Ospreys.

    North Florida returns four starters and seven letterwinners from last season. In 2009-10, the Ospreys posted a record of 13-18 in their first season under head coach Matthew Driscoll.

    While this is the first meeting between UW and UNF, there are a few ties between the schools. The Athletics Director at North Florida is Lee Moon, who was the Athletics Director at Wyoming from 1996-2003. In addition North Florida's head coach, Matthew Driscoll, was an assistant coach at Wyoming during the 1997-98 season under head coach Larry Shyatt. Finally one of Driscoll's assistant coaches is Jeremy Shyatt, the oldest son of Larry Shyatt.

    Thursday Continues a Stretch of Five Games over Nine Days for the Cowboys:
    Thursday's game continues a busy stretch of games for the Cowboys. In fact, they will play five games over the course of nine days between Nov. 16 and Nov. 24. Following this weekend's games, the Pokes will travel to Cancun, Mexico for the Cancun Challenge and will play Missouri on Nov. 23 and either Providence or La Salle on Nov. 24.

    Tickets to the Game and Special Promotions:
    Tickets to all Wyoming Cowboy basketball games can be purchased online at www. WyomingAthletics.com or by calling the UW Athletics Ticket Office at 1-877-WYO-FAN1 (1-877-996-3261) or 307-766-4850.

    Also watch for special single-game ticket promotions at WyomingAthletics.com throughout the 2010-11 season.

    For this Thursday's game versus North Florida, there will be a pair up with the Pokes ticket special. For $28, fans will get two game tickets, two Pepsis and two t-shirts. The Cowboys will also be holding a canned food drive with the Brown and Gold Outlet.