Pokes Rout CSU in Border War

by staff–20 Feb ’16

Senior guard Josh Adams tallied 37 points and tied a school record with nine threes to guide the University of Wyoming men’s basketball team to a dominant 84-66 win over rival Colorado State on Saturday afternoon in Moby Arena. The Cowboys (13-15, 6-9 MW) led wire-to-wire in the 225th Border War to claim their largest margin of victory in Fort Collins since 1981.

“What can you say about Josh Adams?” UW head coach Larry Shyatt said. “I thought it may have been his best performance at both ends of the court. He had eight defensive rebounds — and I mean up high on the square. He led the team, inspired the team. He dropped 9 of 16 threes — what can you say?”

The Pokes opened the game with a 14-0 run by holding the Rams (14-13, 6-8 MW) off the scoreboard for the first six-plus minutes of the game and never really looked back from there. CSU would get back within single digits at 51-42 with 13:37 left in the game, but back-to-back triples from junior guard Jason McManamen pushed the advantage back to 14 and the Pokes grew the lead to as much as 21 with three minutes to go.

“I think maybe the big basket came when they went zone and cut it to nine and we found a wide-open Jason McManamen in the left corner, where he hit the game-winner last year,” Shyatt said. “When that ball netted and we got the lead back up to 12, I think our entire team felt like this is our day.”

Adams notched another performance for the Cowboy history books by finishing one point shy of his career high and adding nine threes, eight rebounds, seven assists and four steals in 36 minutes. His nine threes tied him for Wyoming’s single-game record with Maurice Alexander, who had the same amount at New Mexico on Feb. 9, 1991. His 12 field goals were a career high as well, as he posted his eighth 30-point effort this season. During the game, Adams moved to second in UW single-season history with 86 threes made and second on the career list as well with 174.

Junior guard Jason McManamen was nearly as impressive as Adams, as he continued his torrid run beyond the arc. McManamen tallied 20 points against the Rams, including five triples of his own, for his third 20-point effort in Wyoming’s last four games. He has nailed 31 threes over the last six contests. Sophomore guard Jeremy Lieberman added 11 points, his second double-figure effort in the last four games, while sophomore forward Alan Herndon had eight points and eight rebounds.

Wyoming shot a season-high 55 percent (31-of-56) from the field for the game and added 46 percent (17-of-37) beyond the arc, as the Cowboys have averaged 15.5 made threes over the last four games. The 31 made field goals were a season high, while the 84 points were UW’s second most this season. CSU’s 32 percent (20-of-63) from the field was a season low for a Cowboy foe, as the Rams made just 26 percent (8-of-31) from deep. The Cowboys added 17 assists, their second most this season, and just seven turnovers for their sixth game with less than 10 in the last 11 contests.

The Pokes return home to host San Diego State on Wednesday at 8 p.m. MT in the Arena-Auditorium.