This was a 10 point loss for the Wyoming Cowboys (2-3) but it played like a much closer game. After very slow start Wyoming was down 35-20 at the half. A strong surge led Amath M'Baye and Desmar Jackson helped the Pokes close the gap to 59-57 with 4:22 left. Wyoming was never able to take the lead but the Mizzou Tigers (3-0)held just a four point lead with under a minute left.
The Tigers got a lucky call and hit a couple shots to bust out to the final 10 point difference. The Pokes were playing in the Cancun Challenge and will now face Providence in the third place game tomorrow at 5pm MST. That game will also be televised on CBS College.
The Pokes could have actually won this game if they had been more consistent in two areas: free throw shooting and three pointers. Wyoming got to the line plenty but went only 19 of 30 from the stripe. The Cowboys hit on only 3 of 14 from behind the arc. All these shooting percentages were way lower in the first half.
Amath M'baye scored 15 of his team high 16 in the second half while setting a new career high. He also added four rebounds and three blocks. Desmar Jackson played 38 minutes due to JayDee Lester missing the game due to some type of food poisoning. He either ate something bad at the buffet or got a case of Montezuma's revenge. Don't drink the water!!!!
Anyways Jackson really tried to do a lot to keep the Pokes in the game. Jackson put up 12 points, 6 rebounds and 4 steals. He also had nine turnovers but not all of those are his fault. If his teammates could of handled a few passes better then his to's would have been much lower. Djibril Thiam came off the bench for the second straight game and put up 8 and 8. I have to say I like the energy that Thiam brings coming in later in the game.
It was pretty evident that Afam Muojeke is yet near 100% in his return from a ruptured patella tendon. He is still missing that explosiveness and has to settle for jump shots instead of driving to the rim. On the night he had 8 points and 6 rebounds but went 3 for 9 from the field and 1 for 5 from behind the arc.
Honestly Missouri did not look like one of the top 15 teams in the country. They shot just 38% from the field and had 20 turnovers. They did hit 10 three pointers as a team and held a 43-32 rebounding advantage. Michael Dixon led all scorers with 17 points in addition to six rebounds and assists. Ricardo Ratliffe was a beast inside and pulled down 12 rebounds. Ratliffe is the JUCO player of the year last season and has made a smooth transition into Division 1 basketball.
Cowboy Joe: Have to give this to M'Baye for having his highest scoring game as a Cowboy. He seems to be making some nice improvements in his sophomore year.
Cowboy Low: Adam Waddell played 12 minutes and had three points that all came on free throws. He didn't even attempt a shot. He'll need to be more aggressive with the ball inside if the Pokes hope to win some games.
Cowboy Foe: Michael Dixon put up quite the state line with his 17/6/6 effort.