Late Surge Propels Wyoming Cowboys to 10-0
Derrious Gilmore scored 21 points and hit a career-high six 3-pointers to lead four Wyoming Cowboys in double figures, as the Pokes improved to 10-0 this season with a 74-55 win over Oklahoma Panhandle State University Saturday at the Arena-Auditorium. UW used a 25-6 run to close out the game.
Head Coach Larry Shyatt said, "I really enjoyed watching our guys play the second half. I thought we battled ourselves, maybe some collective adversity, the first half at both ends of the floor. I thought the second half, even though it took six or seven minutes to unravel, I really thought our defense laid into them."
Leonard Washington scored 16 points and grabbed 11 rebounds, while Larry Nance, Jr added 13 points and Luke Martinez chipped in 12.
Wyoming let the Aggies hang around until Gilmore, Washington and Nance sparked the big second half surge. The game was tied at 49 with 10:53 left. Then the those three combined for 25 of the final 27 points the Cowboy scored in the game. In that stretch, Nance had a huge put-back dunk by Nance off a missed 3 by Martinez at the 9:01 mark. Washington had a big jam of his own with 5:42 left. Gilmore knocked down a pair of 3's and had a key 3-point with 8:24 remaining.
The Pokes shot 47.5 percent (28-59) from the floor, were 9-21 (42.9%) from 3-point range and went 9-12 (75%) at the foul line. They held the OPSU to 38.9 percent (21-54) shooting from the field, which included just 30.8 percent in the second half. The Aggies were 6-17 (35.3%) from beyond the arc. They went 7-12 (58.3%) at the free throw line.
"Defense," was the difference said Nance, Jr. "We knew in the first half we didn't play up to par or how we wanted to play. Coach (Shyatt) just let us know that's our identity, and we can't shy away from that. I think we got seven straight stops on defense, seven straight defensive rebounds and that's what really did it. No the dunk or the block."
UW got off to a sluggish start. Up 18-16, back-to-back 3's by Gilmore and Martinez sparked a 15-4 run that was capped by another Gilmore 3-pointer for a 33-20 lead. The Aggies responded with an 11-4 spurt and pulled within six. It was 40-34 UW at halftime.
The Cowboys have won 19 consecutive games at the Double-A. Coach Shyatt is now 36-5 in the Arena-Auditorium, which includes a 26-1 mark in non-conference action.
Wyoming now has 10 days off before they face the Denver Pioneers in their next game on Tuesday, December 18th. Game time is at 7 pm. You can listen to Cowboy basketball on Y95 Country starting at 6:30 pm.