Cowboys Corral Cougars

Keena Young pulled down a team-high five rebounds in BYU's 83-71 loss to the Wyoming Cowboys Monday night. (Photo by Jaren Wilkey/BYU Photo)

LARAMIE -- BYU's Mountain West Conference woes continued Monday night as the Cougars fell 83-71 to the Wyoming Cowboys in Laramie, opening league play 0-3 for the first time in the Steve Cleveland era.

"I was pleased with our aggression level but if you can't hit open shots on the road, you're not going to win," said BYU head coach Cleveland. "We're not getting stops or making shots when we need to. When you play like this, you're not going to win any conference games."

The Cougars got off to a characteristic slow start, falling behind by as many as eight points in the first 10 minutes of play. An 11-2 BYU run capped by a Mike Rose three-pointer gave the Cougars their first lead at 24-23, but it was short-lived as the Cowboys came back to take a 35-31 halftime lead. BYU's top two scorers, Mike Hall and Austin Ainge, combined for a total of two first half points as the Cougars have now shot 18-70 (.250) in the opening periods of the last two games.

BYU fought back to open the second half, tying the game at 39 with the help of Hall, who found the net for eight points in the first eight minutes of the period. But Wyoming proved resilient throughout the half, knocking down critical shots and pushing the lead. The Cougars consistently clawed their way back to within two or three points only to be answered on the other end as BYU could not find a way to get stops. A five-minute field goal drought to end the game did the Cougars in as they scored their last six points from the free throw line while the Cowboys padded their lead, eventually earning the 12-point win.

Hall finished the game with a team-high 16 points and was the only BYU starter in double figures. Rose added 13 points while Derek Dawes scored a career-high 11 and Keena Young contributed 10, all off the bench. Just one game removed from a career-high 25 points, Ainge scored only two points against the Cowboys. Young, who leads the Cougars in rebounds, pulled down a team-high five boards.

Wyoming's Dion Sherrell led the Cowboys with a season-high 19 points. Justin Williams, the league's top shot-blocker, recorded four rejections while also adding 19 points.

As a team, BYU shot 37.7 percent from the field and has now made 35.8 percent of its buckets in league play. The Cougars are averaging 43 percent on the season. Wyoming shot 50.8 percent from field goal range, equaling the highest shooting percentage BYU has allowed all season. The Cougars also managed just 22.2 percent shooting from beyond the arc compared to the Cowboys' 39 percent effort from three-point range. The nation's 15th ranked free throw shooting team, BYU hit 78 percent (21-27) from the line, topping its season average.

At 6-12 overall, the Cougars will now head home for three games, beginning with a matchup against the Air Force Falcons on Saturday. The 11 a.m. Marriott Center tip will be broadcast regionally on ABC television.

Official Basketball Box Score -- GAME TOTALS -- FINAL STATISTICS

Brigham Young Cougars vs Wyoming Cowboys

1-17-05 10:05 p.m. at Laramie, Wyo.

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VISITORS: Brigham Young Cougars 6-12, 0-3 MWC

TOT-FG 3-PT REBOUNDS

## Player Name FG-FGA FG-FGA FT-FTA OF DE TOT PF TP A TO BLK S MIN

01 HALL, Mike.......... f 4-12 1-3 7-8 2 1 3 2 16 1 2 0 2 34

54 MILES, Chris........ f 0-2 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 2 0 0 0 0 0 3

52 JENSEN, Jared....... c 2-7 0-0 0-0 2 2 4 4 4 1 1 1 0 26

13 AINGE, Austin....... g 0-8 0-6 2-2 1 3 4 0 2 3 2 0 2 27

23 BALDERSON, Jimmy.... g 2-4 1-2 4-6 0 4 4 4 9 0 0 0 0 23

02 ROSE, Mike.......... 4-8 1-5 4-4 1 2 3 2 13 0 2 0 0 17

03 YOUNG, Keena........ 5-7 0-0 0-0 1 4 5 0 10 1 2 2 0 16

12 REICHNER, Brock..... 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 5

20 BURGESS, Sam........ 1-2 1-2 0-0 0 2 2 1 3 1 2 0 1 14

41 MEADS, Garner....... 1-2 0-0 1-2 0 2 2 2 3 0 2 0 1 12

43 DAWES, Derek........ 4-9 0-0 3-5 3 0 3 0 11 0 1 2 0 23

TEAM................ 4 3 7

Totals.............. 23-61 4-18 21-27 14 24 38 17 71 7 14 5 6 200

TOTAL FG% 1st Half: 11-33 33.3% 2nd Half: 12-28 42.9% Game: 37.7% DEADB

3-Pt. FG% 1st Half: 3-9 33.3% 2nd Half: 1-9 11.1% Game: 22.2% REBS

F Throw % 1st Half: 6-8 75.0% 2nd Half: 15-19 78.9% Game: 77.8% 3

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HOME TEAM: Wyoming Cowboys 9-7, 1-2 MWC

TOT-FG 3-PT REBOUNDS

## Player Name FG-FGA FG-FGA FT-FTA OF DE TOT PF TP A TO BLK S MIN

01 LEVEN,Steve......... f 1-10 1-5 0-0 0 3 3 0 3 3 2 0 0 26

21 WILLIAMS, Justin.... f 8-9 0-0 3-3 1 6 7 2 19 1 4 4 0 30

13 DUNN, Alex.......... c 4-10 0-0 2-4 4 5 9 4 10 1 2 0 0 22

00 SHERRELL, Dion...... g 7-11 5-9 0-0 0 2 2 1 19 4 0 0 1 32

03 STRAIGHT, Jay....... g 6-14 2-6 0-1 1 5 6 1 14 5 1 0 1 40

02 WEBB, Jerry......... 2-4 1-2 1-2 1 0 1 5 6 0 1 0 1 15

05 LEWIS, Kevin........ 0-1 0-1 0-0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 7

34 ANDERSON,Chris...... 0-0 0-0 0-2 1 2 3 0 0 0 2 0 0 3

54 WABBINGTON, Derek... 4-4 0-0 4-8 1 3 4 4 12 1 1 0 0 25

TEAM................ 3 1 4

Totals.............. 32-63 9-23 10-20 12 27 39 17 83 15 13 4 4 200

TOTAL FG% 1st Half: 12-29 41.4% 2nd Half: 20-34 58.8% Game: 50.8% DEADB

3-Pt. FG% 1st Half: 5-12 41.7% 2nd Half: 4-11 36.4% Game: 39.1% REBS

F Throw % 1st Half: 6-13 46.2% 2nd Half: 4-7 57.1% Game: 50.0% 5

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Officials: Steve Welmer, Verne Harris, Mark Whitehead

Technical fouls: Brigham Young Cougars-None. Wyoming Cowboys-None.

Attendance: 7360

Score by Periods 1st 2nd Total

Brigham Young Cougars......... 31 40 - 71

Wyoming Cowboys............... 35 48 - 83

ID-298408

Points in the paint-BY 30,WY 38. Points off turnovers-BY 16,WY 15.

2nd chance points-BY 17,WY 12. Fast break points-BY 4,WY 2.

Bench points-BY 40,WY 18. Score tied-2 times. Lead changes-2 times.

Tags: Results