Cowboys Shoot Their Way to a Sweep of Air Force
Justin James scored 26 points to lead the Wyoming Cowboys to their second road win in conference play, 83-74, at Air Force Saturday in Colorado Springs.
James knocked down eight free throws in the final two minutes to keep Air Force at bay. His jumper at the 9:26 mark stopped a 17-1 run by the Falcons that had pulled them within 61-55.
Jeremy Lieberman made a key three-pointer with the shot clock winding down at the 3:40 mark pushed the Cowboys’ lead to 72-60. Lieberman’s three just two possessions later made it 75-62.
In a release from the university, UW head coach Allen Edwards had plenty of praise for James and Lieberman.
“Justin is a special talent, and we like what he brings to this team. We just want to see him continue to improve. Jeremy was great tonight and that shows the confidence the staff has with him, as he has hit some big shots as of late.”
Wyoming (15-9, 5-6) shot 50 percent in the game. They knocked down 13 three-pointers and shot 48 percent from beyond the arc. Alan Herndon added 16 points, five rebounds and four blocked shots. Lieberman scored 14 points with four three’s. James added a career-high seven assists to his point total. As a team, UW finished with 21 assists on 29 field goals and nine blocked shots.
“I thought we got back to being us, and my thing is if we move on offense and move bodies, shots will present themselves,” said Edwards. “We were assertive, aggressive and found each other for open looks and our ball movement and player movement helped us find the open guy.”
Air Force (10-13, 3-7) was led by Frank Toohey with 23 points. The Falcons shot only 36 percent for the game. Air Force did capitalize with 17 points off 16 Wyoming turnovers.
The Cowboys got off to a hot start and led 13-3. The Falcons pulled within five, but UW responded with a 20-6 run for a 42-23 lead. The Pokes began the game 15-of-19 from the field and made 7-of-8 three’s. Air Force answered though, with a 13-0 spurt and got back within six. A Morris Marshall three at the buzzer gave Wyoming a 47-36 edge at half.
The second half began with a surge by the Cowboys. They made three 3-pointers as part of a 13-2 run for their biggest lead of 60-38.
Wyoming comes home to host Fresno State Wednesday night at 7 p.m. in the Arena-Auditorium.