Pokes Win in Albuquerque For First Time in 12 Years

by staff–17 Jan ’16

Senior guard Josh Adams notched a career-high 38 points to push the University of Wyoming men’s basketball team past New Mexico, 70-68, on Saturday afternoon in the Arena-Auditorium. The Cowboys (10-9, 3-3 MW) went on a 22-7 run midway through the second half to take control and earn their first win over the Lobos (10-8, 3-2 MW) in The Pit Since 2003.

Adams career day certainly was the catalyst for the Pokes, but the spark came from sophomore guard Jeremy Lieberman. With the Pokes down six just seven minutes into the second half, Lieberman scored seven-straight points, including a three, and Adams knocked down a triple himself to spark a 22-7 run that put the Cowboys in front 62-53 with five minutes left. The Lobos would make a late run to cut the lead to one with 26 seconds left, but free throws from junior guard Jason McManamen and Adams would break Wyoming’s 12-straight losses to UNM in the building.

Adams 38 points came on 10-of-15 from the field, 7-of-11 from deep and 11-of-12 at the free throw line, as his seven threes tied a career high. He also added five steals and three assists. His 38 points were his sixth 30-point effort this season and moved him into 12th in Cowboy history with 1,524 points, while he also tied Jay Straight for fifth all-time with his 110th start.

McManamen added 10 points to reach double figures for the ninth time in Wyoming’s last 10 contests, while sophomore forward Hayden Dalton contributed a career-high eight rebounds and tied a career best with two blocks in his first career start.

Wyoming shot 42 percent (21-of-50) from the field and 39 percent (12-of-31) from deep to tie season highs in three-pointers made and attempted. New Mexico connected on 49 percent (26-of-53) and 14 percent (1-of-7) beyond the arc to set a season low for a Cowboy foe in threes made and threes attempted. The Lobos earned a 39-27 advantage on the boards and 42-12 in points in the paint, but the two squads combined for 49 fouls. Wyoming’s 25 fouls were a season high, but their seven turnovers were their second fewest this season.

The Cowboys held the advantage the majority of the first half, including a seven-point lead with eight minutes remaining, but the Lobos closed the opening frame on a 10-4 run to take a 30-29 lead into the break. It marked the fourth-straight game the two had been within three points of each other at halftime. Wyoming shot just 36 percent (9-of-25) from the field and 27 percent (4-of-15) from deep in the first half compared to 48 percent (12-of-25) and 33 percent (1-of-3), respectively, for New Mexico. The Lobos earned a 21-13 advantage on the boards and 18-4 in points in the paint. The teams combined for 25 fouls in the first half.

Wyoming returns home to host Nevada on Wednesday at 7 p.m. MT in the Arena-Auditorium.