Cowboys Claw Past Eagles in 73-60 Victory
A 13-0 run in the second half helped the Wyoming Cowboys take control, and they went on to post a 73-60 win over the North Carolina Central Eagles Wednesday night at the Arena-Auditorium. The Cowboys had three players score in double figures, led by Luke Martinez with 20 points, in their first game of the Global Sports Hoops Showcase.
Wyoming (2-0) was in front the entire first half, but the Eagles 7-2 spurt at the start of the second half gave them a 43-40 edge with 17:40 left. Down 45-44, the Cowboys responded with the key run, which was spear-headed by Freshmen Austin Haldorson and Josh Adams, who combined for seven points. A 3-pointer by Martinez, and a 3-point play by Leonard Washington finished it off and pushed the advantage to 57-45.
Adams said the key sequence started by he and Haldorson just happened that way. "It was just in the flow of what our team was doing. We hit some shots for the team and were able to spark a run."
North Carolina Central cut the lead to seven points, at 57-50, when the Pokes responded with a 9-2 spurt for a 66-52 lead with 5:55 remaining. Despite some turnovers down the stretch, the Cowboy defense never let the Eagles back in it.
UW Head Coach Larry Shyatt said, "I thought the team I saw the second half was the team that we've seen at practice everyday. A team that gave up 24 points (NCC total in 2nd half), a team that gave up 26 percent from the field and 26 percent from three."
Washington finished with his seventh career double-double, as he had 17 points and 10 rebounds. Derrious Gilmore scored 10 points, while Adams added 9 points off the bench. Also, Larry Nance, Jr. grabbed a career-high 13 rebounds. Wyoming shot 50 percent from the field (26-52), went 7-for-25 (28%) from beyond the arc and were 14-of-19 (73.7%) at the free throw line. At one stretch in the game, the Cowboys missed 11 consecutive 3-point shot attempts. The Pokes did out-rebound the Eagles 34-23.
NCC (1-2) was led by Ray Willis with 20 points. Jeremy Ingram added 11 points. The Eagles shot 40 percent (18-45) in the game, but were held to 26.9 percent (7-26) in the second half. They were 6-15 (40%) from 3 and 18-20 (90%) at the charity stripe.
UW started the game on a 10-0 run and built a 25-10 lead midway through the first half. Then the Cowboys got too comfortable and saw North Carolina Central close the half on a 14-2 run. It was 38-36 Wyoming at the break.
Shyatt also said, "We played more zone than in 39 years of coaching, but I thought we needed to. I thought we were having trouble with the pick-and-roll game. I thought we were getting tired. We didn't substitute as freely as perhaps we expected to, but we wanted to grab a 'W'."
In the first game of the tournament, the Southern Jaguars (1-2) held off the South Dakota Coyotes (0-1) by a final score of 83-79.
The Pokes return to action on Day 2 of the Global Sports Hoops Showcase, as they face South Dakota at 7 pm. You can listen to Cowboy basketball on Y95 Country. The broadcast will start at 6:30 pm.