The University of Wyoming men's basketball team ended the regular season with a 78-56 loss to Colorado State on Wednesday night in the Arena-Auditorium. The Rams (23-7, 10-5 MW) led 47-32 at halftime and extended the lead to as many as 25 late in the second half to hand the Cowboys (18-12, 4-12 MW) their fifth-straight loss.
"When you're down 47-32 at halftime, a lot has to go right for you to come back," UW head coach Larry Shyatt said. "I thought our guys did a good job of cutting the lead to 12 a couple of times. But to make a great run you have to do almost everything right, including hitting free throws.
Sophomore forward Larry Nance Jr. paced the Pokes with 16 points, five rebounds and two assists, as he reached double-figure points for the 13th time this season. Senior guard Derrious Gilmore added 12 points and four assists, including two treys to move into seventh on UW's single-season makes list with 65.
Wyoming hit on 54 percent (22-of-41) from the field and 36 percent (5-of-14) from deep, while Colorado State finished at 62 percent (32-of-52) and 33 percent (4-of-12).
UW has allowed four of its last five opponents to shoot over 50 percent from the field. CSU earned a plus 24 rebound margin, grabbing 35 itself and holding UW to a season-low 11.
"[Colorado State] has been a good rebounding team since day one, and we have been a good defensive team," Shyatt said. "But to give up 47 points in the first half was really disappointing, and they got many of those 47 points off offensive rebounds. They did what they did best tonight. If we would have played the first half like we did the second half, I think it would have been a heck of a ball game, but we dug too deep of a whole in the first half."
The Pokes built a 10-7 lead through the first four minutes, but Colorado State found its grove with a 10-0 run to pull in front. Wyoming kept the advantage in single digits thanks to several baskets by freshman guard Josh Adams, but the Rams pushed the lead to double-digits midway through the half at 28-18.
CSU crept the lead up to as much as 16, before going into halftime up 47-32. The Rams' 47 first-half points were the most Wyoming has allowed this season.
Nance paced UW with nine points and three rebounds in the first half, while sophomore guard Riley Grabau had seven points. Wyoming shot well in the first half, 57 percent (12-of-21) from the field and 56 percent (5-of-9) beyond the arc, but Colorado State hit 63 percent (19-of-30) from the field.
The Rams hit 2 of their 8 three attempts (25 percent). CSU earned an 18-4 margin in rebounds and 3-0 in steals in the first half.
Colorado State kept the lead in double digits the second half, as UW could only get as close as 12 five minutes into the half. The Rams extended the lead to as much as 25 with four minutes left. Nance scored seven in the half and Gilmore added six.
The Cowboys have a bye on the final weekend of MW play, before traveling to the 2013 Reese's Mountain West Championships next week.
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