Dec. 18, 2009
LARAMIE, Wyo. -
This Sunday promises to be an exciting day for Wyoming basketball fans, as the Cowboys and Cowgirls will play a rare double header in the Arena-Auditorium.
After the Cowgirls face Oregon at 2 p.m., the Cowboys will take the floor at 5:30 p.m. to host the South Dakota Coyotes.
For the Cowboy basketball team, this Sunday marks the beginning of a stretch of home games. In fact, they will play five of their next six games at home as they close out the non-conference season and begin Mountain West Conference play.
The Cowboys saw their first three-game winning streak of the season come to an end this past Tuesday at Tennessee. Despite leading the No. 8/9 ranked Volunteers on their home floor by as many as ten points, the Cowboys dropped their first game of December by a score of 77-58. With the loss, the Pokes fell to 5-5 overall.
As has become tradition over the past two seasons, the Cowboys continue to excel at getting to the free-throw line and converting those attempts. In fact, the Pokes currently lead the nation in made free throws (254) and rank second in attempts (341). With a free-throw percentage of 74.5, they are the 34th best free-throw shooting team in the country. The Pokes also rank 10th in the nation in steals per game.
The Pokes are led in scoring by three sophomores and a junior. Riding back-to-back 15-point performances, sophomore Afam Muojeke leads the way with 16.4 points per game. Muojeke is followed by sophomore A.J. Davis (11.8 ppg), sophomore Adam Waddell (11.7 ppg) and junior Djibril Thiam (11.2 ppg).
Sunday's game with the South Dakota Coyotes will mark the fifth overall meeting between the two schools. Wyoming leads the overall series 3-1, with all four previous meetings being played in Laramie.
South Dakota enters Sunday's game with a 6-4 overall record. The Coyotes are in their second season of the transition period to the NCAA Division I level. Last season, they posted a 20-9 overall record as they played without a conference affiliation. This year, the Coyotes became a member of the Great West Conference. They return seven letterwinners and three starters from last year's team.
The Coyotes 2009-10 roster features four players who are averaging double-figures in scoring. Freshman guard Jake Thomas is leading the way with 14.9 points per game and is followed by senior forward Tyler Cain (13.9 ppg), junior guard Mitchell Bouie (11.1 ppg) and sophomore guard Louie Krogman (10.3 ppg).
Both Wyoming and South Dakota feature high-scoring offenses. The Cowboys are averaging 78.1 points per game and the Coyotes are averaging 82.4. Both teams rank among the top-60 scoring teams in the nation.
Following Sunday's contest, the Cowboys will take to the road for their final non-conference road game of the season. They will play at Northern Iowa on Wed., Dec. 23 as part of the inaugural Mountain West Conference/Missouri Valley Conference Challenge. The Cowboys and Panthers are set to tip off at 6 p.m. (Mountain Time) from UNI's McLeod Center.