Nine points. No, that is not what junior guard Jamaal Franklin scored. That is what the Aztecs scored in the first half.
After shooting 38 percent against The University of Nevada, Las Vegas on Wednesday, the Aztecs were once again plagued by poor shooting on Saturday in a 58-45 loss against Wyoming.
San Diego State and Wyoming both came into the game with 14 wins before the Cowboys snapped their five-game losing streak against the Aztecs.
The Aztecs could not buy a basket in the first half, making only four field goals and one free throw on 16 percent shooting from the field. The Aztecs headed to the locker room trailing 20-9, their lowest scoring first half of the season.
Franklin led the Aztecs with 13-points after a scoreless first half.
Freshman forward Winston Shepard scored 10 points in his second start for the Aztecs, replacing junior guard Xavier Thames who was unable to play because of a recurring back injury. Senior guard Chase Tapley also had 9 points.
The Aztecs finished the game shooting 28 percent from the field and only made two 3-pointers on 18 attempts. Their score of 45 points was the lowest of the season, even lower than their 49 points aboard the USS Midway in their season opener against Syracuse.
The long, athletic stature of the Aztecs didn’t help them in the open court and they were unable to convert any fast break points.
Aztec head coach Steve Fisher said the Aztecs were simply out played.
“We got outfought,” Fisher said. “We didn’t make shots … but that’s going to happen. But when you get outfought and out-toughed and out-efforted, that’s inexcusable. And it starts with me.”
Wyoming head coach Larry Shyatt, on the other hand, was very pleased with the effort his team displayed.
“I can’t say enough about how much I appreciate the effort this team gives, the way they share the ball and the defense they play,” Shyatt said.
The Cowboys, who also struggled in the first half on 8 of 25 shooting, made approximately 43 percent of their total shots from the field behind senior forward Leonard Washington’s 14 points and 14 rebounds. Senior guard Derrious Gilmore also added
The Cowboys were missing their second leading scorer, senior guard Luke Martinez, who according to the Casper Star-Tribune, was involved in a bar fight on Dec. 30 and had been suspended indefinitely.
The Aztecs travel to Reno on Wednesday for their second road game in a row to face off against the University of Nevada Wolf Pack.