Cowboys drop first home game of the season to Aztecs

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University of Wyoming photo

March 1, 2022 — The Cowboys nearly erased an 11-point deficit but fell just short in a 73-66 home loss to San Diego State on Monday. It marked the first home loss for the Pokes since February 6, 2021 (14 games). The loss drops the Pokes into third place in the Mountain West with a 12-4 record (23-6 overall). San Diego State improved to 11-4 in the conference and 19-7 on the year.

Wyoming Hunter Maldonado recorded a big night with 13 points, 11 assists, and 11 rebounds, the first triple-double by Cowboy players since Justin Williams against Utah on March 10, 2006. Graham Ike also added a double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds. Jeremiah Oden led the Pokes with 17 points.

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“Give them (San Diego State) credit for coming out and making those shots in the first half,” UW head coach Jeff Linder said. “We were probably a half step behind or a little timid in the first half. We knew this team would come at us.” 
 
San Diego State led 44-37 at the end of the first half and increased the lead to 50-39 with 17:45 left in the second half. The Pokes cut the lead to seven, 50-43 on a Maldonado layup at the 15:15 mark and were still down seven, 54-47 with at the 10:33 mark.

Wyoming’s Noah Reynolds scored on a layup to get the Pokes within four 58-54 with just over eight minutes to play. Then with 6:11 to go, Maldonado made one of two free throws to get UW to within three, 60-57. But, the Aztecs would build the lead back to as many as seven points before an Oden layup brought the Cowboys back to within three-point 64-61 with just under four minutes to go in regulation.

Wyoming would get within one point on two occasions, 65-64 at 2:14 and 67-66 at 1:20, but could never take the lead.

On Wednesday, Wyoming will hit the road heading to UNLV (9-7 in the MW/17-12 overall). The game will be broadcast on WyoRadio’s 99.7 JACK-FM and 99KSIT.com beginning at 8 p.m. with tip-off at 8:30 p.m. tween the teams this season in conference play.