* University of Wyoming press release

BOISE, Idaho – The Wyoming Cowboys could not overcome a Boise State run in the first half in a 75-63 loss to the Broncos on Saturday evening in ExtraMile Arena in Boise, Idaho.

Hunter Maldonado added 14 points and became Wyoming’s all-time leader in scoring in MW games passing Justin James and Brandon Ewing with 1,100 in his career.

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“I thought our response was great after going down early,” UW head coach Jeff Linder said.” It was the 50-50 balls that costed us in the first half. But our response in the second half was great with Maldo going down and our guys playing hard. They are a good team and responded well tonight.”

Maldonado scored in double-figures for the 101st time in his career and ranks in the top-five in scoring in MW games in conference history. He was an impressive 6-of-8 from the field. Brendan Wenzel added 12 points for back-to-back games in double-figures. Jeremiah Oden added 14 points for his eighth game in conference play in double-figures. Xavier DuSell added 13 points for his eighth game in double-figures this season. Caden Powell recorded a career-high eight points in the game and added x rebounds.

The Pokes shot 46 percent from the field and were 52 percent in the second half. Boise State shot 53 percent and shot 41 percent from the three-point line. Boise State dominated the glass in the contest and held a 34-19 advantage.

The Broncos got out to an early 7-1 lead on the Cowboys in a defensive battle, but Wyoming made it a 7-3 game on a Maldonado layup with the Pokes starting 1-of-7 from the field to that point. Powell and DuSell added back-to-back buckets in the paint and made it a 9-7 game with just over 13 minutes left in the half.

DuSell would get hot for the Cowboys adding a pair of three-pointers to make it a 14-13 game for Boise State with 11:11 left in the half. Boise State responded with a 5-0 run to take a 21-15 lead with 8:18 left in the frame. Wyoming went scoreless for nearly four-minutes with the Broncos building a lead to 12-points at 29-17 with four minutes left in the first half.

Boise State would continue the hot offense with a 10-0 run to make it a 39-19 game with 1:22 left in the first half. Maldonado would add a pair of baskets late in the half and became Wyoming’s all-time leading scorer in conference game. Boise State held the Pokes to 40 percent from the field in the half and took a 41-23 lead into the break.

The Broncos hit a pair of buckets to open the half, but Oden added a three-pointer for a 45-26 game. Wenzel added a pair of three-pointers and Oden added a triple to make it a 47-31 game with 16 minutes left. Powell would add a pair of baskets and capped a 9-0 run for the Pokes, who made it a 47-35 game with 14:15 remaining. Wyoming forced five turnovers during the stretch.

Wenzel hit a step-back three-pointer and made it a 49-37 contest at the 12:11 mark of the second half. The Broncos would use the free throw line and build the lead to 53-37 halfway through the second frame. Maldonado returned after missing time and added a three-pointer for a 55-43 game.

Max Rice hit a corner three-pointer and Naje Smith added a bucket with the Broncos taking a 63-45 advantage with under seven minutes left. Boise State would added free throws and build the lead to 20 points with six minutes left. BSU would take the lead up to 24 points with under three minutes left. DuSell added five-straight points to make it an 18 points game. Wyoming made it a 12-point game late with a 6-0 run, but BSU took the game 75-63.

The Broncos were led by Tyson Degenhart with 20 points in the game going 9-of-11 from the field. He was one of five scorers in double-figures for the Broncos.

The Cowboys remain on the road. UW will travel to New Mexico on Tuesday for an 8 p.m. game inside the Pit in a contest on CBS Sports Network.

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