Larry Nance Jr. was good once again and a couple of other players showed some good things in brief stretches.
But in the end, SMU was too big, physical and deep for Wyoming as the Cowboys lost 62-54 Friday night at the Arena-Audidtorium in Laramie.
Nance and coach Larry Shyatt said it was UW’s second-half defense that cost them this game. A 10 minute scoring drought to end the first half and to start the second where UW didn’t make a basket didn’t help, either, nor did the fact UW didn’t make a basket in the final 4:20 of the game.
Here are some highlights of some of UW’s scoring chances late in the game:
Nance said he played soft once he picked up his third foul early in the second half. Maybe, but he was UW’s only consistent player in this game with 16 points and a season-high 13 rebounds.
Nance had nine points and only three rebounds in the second half and sat for about six minutes. He talks about what happened to UW in the second half in this video interview:
Jerron Granberry added 12 off the bench and sot the ball a little better (3 of 6 from the field, 2 of 5 from 3-point range). Sophomore guard Josh Adams added 10 but was 4 of 11 from the field.
But guys like senior guard Nathan Sobey (1 of 9) and junior guard Riley Grabau (1 of 5) have to shoot better from the field for this team to have a chance to win games.
SMU was impressive: big, physical, long and athletic. The Mustangs definitely passed the eye test. They also were deep as nine of the 11 players that saw action scored at least three points. Five players scored between six and 15 points..
The Mustangs outrebounded the Cowboys 23-9 in the second half; and SMU shot 59.3 percent during that time as well.
UW shot a season-low 34.8 percent.
Coach Larry Shyatt talks about the game in this video interview:
Add all that up and it’s amazing that UW was even in this game.
But in it doesn’t mean win it. Now UW has its first two-game losing streak. At 7-4, Shyatt and his players feel the four teams that beat it will play in the postseason. We will see. The Cowboys have a lot of work to do if they hope to be in the postseason.
For more on the game, see Saturday’s Wyoming Tribune Eagle and Laramie Boomerang and log on to wyosports.net.