Sophomore guard Justin James scored the Cowboys’ final five points in the final 90 seconds to lift Wyoming (14-7, 4-4 MW) past UNLV (10-11, 3-5 MW) 66-65 on Wednesday evening in the Arena-Auditorium. Junior forward Hayden Dalton recorded his eighth double-double of the season with 15 points and 10 rebounds to lead the Pokes.
“At the end of the day, a win is a win, but I was a little displeased in how we came out in the second half,” UW head coach Allen Edwards said. “We did not rebound the basketball well in the second half. We had an opportunity to take a step forward as a program tonight, particularly the way we played in the first half. But we didn’t come out with that same energy in the second half, and we missed an opportunity to take that step forward.”
The Runnin’s Rebels erased 18-point halftime deficit to take a 64-61 lead on the Pokes with 1:45 remaining. But James added a three-point play and jumper as part of his 14 points on the night to make it a 66-64 game with a minute remaining. UNLV’s Jovon Mooring put up a three pointer with two seconds remaining, but it rimmed out giving UW the win.
“One of the things that Justin has is he is a talented young man,” Edwards said. “He is one of the guys who can truly go get his shot, and I don’t know if there is a defender who can guard him one on one if he (Justin) understands how to play within our system.”