Arena Auditorium in Laramie is the site where a pair of undefeated programs will collide on Saturday night, as the Wyoming Cowboys host the 19th-ranked Colorado Buffaloes in non-conference play.
With seven wins in as many opportunities, the Cowboys are off to their best start since 1987-88 campaign when the squad raced out to an 11-0 mark. Three times the team has held an opponent to less than 50 points, the most recent of those coming on Wednesday in a 68-40 thrashing of UC Santa Barbara on the road.
As for the Buffaloes, they raised their visibility with a 60-58 win over Baylor during the Charleston Classic a few weeks back, but more recently the team survived a serious scare when it had to go to double-overtime to capture an 85-80 win over Texas Southern on Tuesday.
Colorado is now off to a 6-0 start for the first time since the team begin 1989-90 with a similar run, but ended up a mere 12-18 overall.
In terms of the all-time series, one that began back in 1908, the Pokes have won 41 of the 76 meetings entering play on Saturday. Last year, the teams met in Boulder where Wyoming pulled out a 65-54 win.
Luke Martinez scored a game-high 17 points as he led the Cowboys to a commanding 28-point win over the Gauchos of UC Santa Barbara in non-conference action three nights ago. Also scoring in double figures for the Cowboys were Derrious Gilmore and Larry Nance, Jr. with 12 points apiece and a combined 11 rebounds. Wyoming survived the meeting despite turning the ball over 16 times, thanks to a defense that held UCSB to a mere 28.6 percent shooting from the floor and 6-of-24 beyond the arc. It also helped that the Pokes posted a 23-2 scoring advantage at the free-throw line as well. Martinez (13.3 ppg) and Gilmore (12.1 ppg) are currently second and third, respectively, on the scoring list for Wyoming, with Leonard Washington taking the lead with his 14.1 ppg. A 51.7 percent shooter from the floor, Washington is also the leading man on the glass with close to nine boards per game, his efforts in the paint also paying off with 15 of the unit's 29 blocked shots as well.
Against a team like Texas Southern that it had never lost too, Colorado certainly made things interesting in their meeting earlier this week when the Buffs needed an additional 10 minutes in order to make it into the win column. Colorado trailed by as many as 15 points in the first half, was down by double figures at the break before holding the visitors to just six made field goals in the second half in order to make it into overtime in the first place. Spencer Dinwiddie led four starters in double figures with 24 points, followed by Josh Scott with 18 and 12 boards and Andre Roberson who also had a double- double with 11 points and 12 rebounds before fouling out. Askia Booker, shooting only 4-of-15 from the floor, accounted for 15 points as the team outscored TSUM by a margin of 33-12 at the free-throw line. Booker leads the team in scoring overall with 16.8 ppg, followed by Dinwiddie and Scott with 14.8 and 14.5 ppg, respectively, as the Buffs generate 76.0 ppg this season.