FACTS & STATS: Site: Clune Arena (5,843) -- USAFA, Colorado. Television: None. Home Record: BSU 7-1, Air Force 6-1. Away Record: BSU 4-2, Air Force 2-4. Neutral Record: BSU 2-0, Air Force 1-1. Conference Record: BSU 1-1, Air Force 1-2. Series Record: Boise State leads, 2-1.
GAME NOTES: Coming off a crushing loss on Wednesday night, the Air Force Falcons try to regroup as they battle the Boise State Broncos in Mountain West Conference action at Clune Arena on Saturday afternoon.
For a team that hadn't scored less than 60 points in any game this season, the Falcons were shocked when they finally looked up at the scoreboard on Wednesday night and realized they had been demolished by Colorado State, 79-40, at Moby Arena. The defeat was the second in a row and the fourth in five games for Air Force.
As for the Broncos, they too suffered a setback three nights ago, but at least they were competitive as they took nationally-ranked New Mexico to overtime before suffering the 79-74 loss at Taco Bell Arena. The decision snapped the team's seven-game win streak and was the first setback in eight games played in the arena this season.
In terms of the all-time series, prior to last season the teams had met only once and in 2011-12 they split their two matchups, with each squad winning on the road by double figures.
In a game that featured 13 ties and just as many lead changes, BSU led by as many as nine points in the first half but just couldn't hold for the win. Five players scored in double figures for the program as Derrick Marks tallied 27 points on 10-of-20 shooting, while Mikey Thompson and Ryan Watkins both dropped in 12 points, the latter also clearing 10 rebounds. Jeff Elorriaga, the hero against Wyoming in the previous outing, tallied 11 points and Anthony Drmic 10. Although he missed the conference opener, Marks is still the top scoring threat for the Broncos this season with his 17.0 ppg, not to mention one of the primary passers for the group with 58 assists. Drmic (15.3 ppg) and Elorriaga (11.9 ppg) help significantly when it comes to BSU outscoring the competition by more than 15.0 ppg at the moment.
Against a Colorado State team that has beaten every opponent on the glass this season, the Falcons stood little chance in that department and even keeping up with the squad in the scoring column a few nights back. Dominated on the glass, 40-19, the Falcons didn't have a single player with more than three rebounds and no one was able to score in double figures either. Michael Lyons and Todd Fletcher made a run at it, but both had to settle for only eight points, the former also being charged with five of the unit's 19 turnovers as well. Lyons is still the lone double-digit scorer on the roster after 15 games, logging 17.7 ppg, his 4.7 rpg also topping the list for the Falcons as well. In the last four defeats the Academy has surrendered no less than 76 points and it is only the efforts against teams such as Regis and Jackson State, programs that posted 43 and 47 points, respectively, that has kept foes with an average of only 67.8 ppg.
With the schedule getting tougher against some very successful MWC squads, the Falcons will have their hands full the rest of the way, and that includes Saturday when they host Boise State.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Boise State 71, Air Force 59
01/19 10:39:08 ET
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