Air Force BBall: Record Setting

Jimmer Fredette - BYU     (TotalBlueSports)

Air Force's season reached a low point when the Falcons were clobbered by Brigham Young on Feb. 13. The 91-48 defeat was Air Force's worst of the season in addition to it being the school's 15th consecutive Mountain West Conference road loss.

GETTING INSIDE

 

   The Falcons (9-15, 1-10) trailed by 33 points at halftime en route to its 10th consecutive loss to BYU.

   "Coming out in the second half, we played with them for the first few minutes, but we lost the game in the first half," coach Jeff Reynolds said. "They had more energy than we did."

   Not to mention having better players -- and better shooters and better defenders, etc. Hence, the 43-point margin of defeat.

   "We did not defend very well," Reynolds said. "We played three different defenses. They moved the ball really well and they played the best offense they could have played."

   Added together, it was easily Air Force's worst showing of the campaign.



NOTES, QUOTES

   --The 43-point loss to BYU was the third worst in Air Force history and the largest margin of defeat in a conference game.

   --The 91 points scored by the Cougars was easily the most Air Force has allowed this season. The previous high of 77 was scored by Dickinson State in November.

   ON THE SPOT: Senior forward Grant Parker would like to make the most of the final stretch of his career. He's still badly bothered by the groin/pelvis injury that caused him to miss 10 contests, and he's certainly been a true gamer. Parker is averaging a team-best 13.6 points, a figure that would be a couple of points higher if not for the injury issues.

   QUOTE TO NOTE: "We missed some shots, but we also didn't attack them the way we needed to. They just came out in the second half and put pressure on us, and I think we were back on our heels a little bit." -- Air Force forward Grant Parker, on seeing a second-half lead against Colorado State disappear on Feb. 9, as the Falcons made just 4 of 22 second-half shots.



STRATEGY AND PERSONNEL

   SEASON RECAP: Air Force lacks the personnel to compete in the Mountain West Conference, and only the team's grittiness has kept the campaign from becoming a disaster. The abundance of injuries hasn't helped and only one player -- guard Evan Washington -- has started all 24 games. Averaging just 58.7 points per game isn't going to get it done.

   PLAYER ROTATION: Usual Starters -- F Grant Parker, C Mike McLain, G Michael Lyons, G Todd Fletcher, G Evan Washington. Key Subs -- F Tom Fow, F Mike Fitzgerald, C Taylor Broekhuis, G Avery Merriex, G Shawn Hempsey, F Derek Brooks.

   GAME REVIEW:

   Texas Christian 65, Air Force 51

   Colorado State 51, Air Force 47

   Brigham Young 91, Air Force 48

   GAME PREVIEW: 

   at New Mexico, Saturday, Feb. 20

   vs. Utah, Wednesday, Feb. 24

   vs. UNLV, Saturday, Feb. 27

   at Wyoming, Tuesday, March 2

   vs. San Diego State, Saturday, March 6

   IN FOCUS: New Mexico is an unlikely place for Air Force to notch its first road win of the season. The following game against Utah at home represents a chance at a victory due to the Utes' up-and-down nature. 

   ROSTER REPORT:

   --Sophomore G/F Taylor Stewart keeps making progress from a late-December wrist injury and could soon be cleared to return to action.

   --Sophomore C Sammy Schafer still hasn't returned to the court nearly three months after a serious concussion.

   --Freshman F Mike Fitzgerald scored a season-high 13 points against BYU while connecting on four 3-point baskets for the second time this season.

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