Can it get any worse for the Wyoming men’s basketball team?
Yes it can.
The Cowboys lost 72-51 at Air Force Saturday afternoon at Clune Arena, and the same problems reared their ugly heads: offense and perimter defense.
UW shot just 37.9 percent from the field, and allowed Air Force to make 11 of 19 3s. The Cowboys got to the free-throw line six times and were 4 of 23 from 3-point range.
“We flew at the shooters and they made some contested shots,” UW coach Heath Schroyer said. “I thought our kids played pretty hard. … But when you get down against them, they can hit a couple of 3 that will break your back.”
UW trailed by as many as 15 in the first half, and 23 late in the game.
Six of Air Force’s 3s came from the corner, which seems like nearly ever 3 is made from by the opponents. This continues to be a problem in UW’s zone defense, but Schroyer and Co. is sticking with the zone. I didn’t see any man-to-man defense in this game, and you would think this would be a game where UW physically matches up a little better than other squads in the MWC.
I thought sophomore forward Amath M’Baye had a nice game with 13 points and seven rebounds. He looked good around the basket. And sophomore forward Brian Gibson had six rebounds in 13 minutes off the bench. he missed three shots in the paint. But he plays hard and he can rebound.
I was really impressed with Air Force sophomore guard Michael Lyons. He led all scorers with 17 points, all in the first half. He’s long and athletic and a pretty good athlete. Senior guard Evan Washington may have had the most impressive line: 11 points, nine assists, six rebounds, one blocked shot and only one turnover in 36 minutes. Sophomore guard Todd Fletcher, who averaged 4.6 points per game coming in, scored 13 and was 3 of 6 from behind the arc.
Seems like a lot of players have career games against the Cowboys these days.
Injuries weren’t a factor in this game for UW. Everyone played who should have played. The Cowboys just got beat, and beat bad.
Hate to think what UNLV, No. 6 San Diego State and No. 9 BYU will do to this team in the next three games.
For more on the Air Force game, see Sunday’s Wyoming Tribune Eagle www.wyomingnews.com and Laramie Boomerang www.laramieboomerang.com