Preview: Cowboys look to avoid sweep by Air Force

LAS VEGAS NV - FEBRUARY 15: Evan Washington #35 of the Air Force Falcons looks to his bench during a game against the UNLV Rebels at the Thomas & Mack Center February 15 2011 in Las Vegas Nevada. UNLV won 49-42. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)


The Wyoming Cowboys (9-18, 2-11) will host the Air Force Falcons (13-12, 4-8) in Arena-Auditorium.  This looks to be their last real shot at grabbing a win during the remainder of the regular season.  After The Falcons game then Wyoming hosts 20 win UNLV on Saturday then week has deal with top 10 San Diego State and BYU. 

The Falcons will most likely finish in 7th place in the Mountain West standings after being picked to finish last by the media before the season started.  Air Force is looking to sweep Wyoming for the first time since 2007-08.  Last year the two teams split the series with the home team winning each time.

Last time these two teams met was in Colorado Springs on January 22nd in an embarrassing loss for the Pokes.  This was one of the worst losses of the year as Wyoming looked awful the entire game on both sides of the ball.  Air Force was 11 of 19 from behind the arc and shot 56% from the field.  The Pokes could get nothing going on offense to hit 4 of 23 three point attempts and shooting just 37% as a team.  Wyoming also managed to get to the free throw line just six times.

That was the old Cowboys under Schroyer who were struggling mightily.  Now under Fred Langley the Pokes are showing a renewed energy and should be much more competitive against the Falcons.  While sitting 1-2 since Langley took over Wyoming has kept things close in every game.  In their last home game on February 12th Wyoming beat TCU 77-67.  One big question mark for the Pokes will the point guard position with JayDee Luster (hip) and Joe Hudson (concussion) dealing with injuries.  Luster has missed the last two games but did practice today while Hudson sat out.  If neither one can play then it will force Arthur Bouedo or Desmar Jackson to handle the point.  

Wyoming has really dominated the series with Air Force over the last 30 years but it has gotten much closer the last couple years.  Hopefully Langley can keep the Pokes playing strong at home.

 

 

Jeff Reynolds may not be an exciting person to interview before or after a game but he has done a nice job this year.  Last year the Falcons had their season ruined by injuries but that has not been the case in 2011.  Air Force plays very a disciplined game that focuses on ball control.  They don't try and run a team out the game, instead preferring to focus on execution and fundamentals.  In their previous meeting Michael Lyons led all scorers with 17 points, he also leads AF with nearly 13 points a game.  Evan Washington put together a solid all around game with 11 points, 9 assists and 6 rebounds.

 

KEYS FOR WYOMING

  • Long distance success:  Wyoming needs to hit some threes and not let Air Force get on a roll from the perimeter.  The Pokes have done a better job with defending the arc under Langley.  
  • Home court advantage:  The Cowboys are win less on the road so it is vital they take advantage of playing in Laramie.  After this game the Pokes have just one remaining home game left this year.
  • Keep on point:  Luster and/or Hudson need to be healthy and ready to go.   Without them then the entire offense will be run differently and it most likely will not have much success. 

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