Falcons Travel to #21/20 UNLV on Saturday
Feb. 24, 2012
GAME #26Air Force Falcons vs. #21/20 UNLV RebelsSaturday, Feb. 25, 20121 p.m. at Las Vegas, Nev. (NBC Sports Network) SITELocation Las Vegas, Nev.Arena Thomas & Mack CenterCapacity 18,500 RADIONetwork Air Force / IMG Sports NetworkStation AM 740 KVOR, Colo. Spgs.Play-by-Play Jim ArthurAnalyst Matt Pauley TELEVISIONNetwork NBC Sports NetworkPlay-by-Play Ted RobinsonAnalyst Blaine Fowler INTERNETLive Stats goairforcefalcons.com COACHESDave Pilipovich (Thiel College, 1986)Air Force 2-2, First Season as Head CoachOverall Same Dave Rice (UNLV, 1991)UNLV 23-6, First SeasonOverall Same ALL-TIME SERIESOverall UNLV leads 27-8At Las Vegas UNLV leads 16-1First Game Jan. 10, 1981Result Air Force won 51-50Last Game Jan. 28, 2012Result UNLV won 65-63 (ot)Current Streak UNLV - 9 Falcons Travel to Vegas to Play #21/20 UNLV on SaturdayThe Air Force Falcons travel to Las Vegas, Nev., to face the nationally-ranked UNLV Rebels on Saturday, Feb. 25 at the Thomas & Mack Center. Tip-off is scheduled for 1 p.m. (PT) and the game will be broadcast locally on AM 740 KVOR and televised nationally on NBC Sports Network. The Falcons are 13-12 and 3-8 in league play after losing to TCU, 65-62, on Wednesday at Clune Arena, while UNLV, ranked #21/20, improved to 23-6 and 7-4 after defeating Boise State, 75-58, at home on Wednesday. Air Force Falls to TCU, 65-62Amric Fields hit a long 3-pointer with 18 seconds remaining to propel TCU to a 65-62 come-from-behind win over Air Force Wednesday night. Justin Hammonds led the Falcons with a career-high 17 points and Taylor Broekhuis had 15 points, four assists and tied the school record with six blocked shots.Michael Lyons gave the Falcons a 62-60 lead with 57 seconds remaining on a turnaround jumper, and Air Force blocked two TCU shots before Fields’ heroics. Air Force had ample opportunities to take the lead in the final seconds, but Lyons and Justin Hammonds could not connect, and the Falcons were forced to foul. J.R. Cadot, who led the Horned Frogs with 16 points and 13 rebounds, hit a pair of free throws with 3.3 seconds left to put TCU up by three. Dave Pilipovich Wins First Career Game as Head CoachDave Pilipovich won his first game as a collegiate head coach on Feb. 15 when Air Force defeated Wyoming 58-53 in Laramie, Wyo. Pilipovich became the eighth head coach in the history of the Air Force men’s basketball program on Feb. 8, 2012. Pilipovich was in his fifth season as a member of the coaching staff and first as associate head coach when he was promoted to head coach after Jeff Reynolds was relieved of his duties.Pilipovich, who spent the previous 25 years as a collegiate assistant coach, helped Air Force to a 16-14 record in his first season as an assistant (2007-08) and was instrumental in the Falcons making the CollegeInsider.com Tournament last year, the team’s first postseason appearance since 2007. Air Force Wins First-Ever Against a Top 20 TeamMichael Lyons scored 27 points and had four steals to lead Air Force to a 58-56 upset of No. 13 San Diego State on Feb. 18, the Falcons’ first win over a top 20 team in program history. The Aztecs had a chance to steal the win but Xavier Thames’ 3-pointer was off the mark at the buzzer, sending San Diego State to its third straight loss. The Falcons improved 1-64 against top-20 teams and 2-74 against ranked opponents. The only other time they beat a ranked team was Feb. 15, 1992, against No. 21 UTEP. Up NextThe Falcons travel to Albuquerque, N.M. to take on the 18th-ranked New Mexico Lobos on Wednesday, Feb. 29. Tip-off is scheduled for 6 p.m. Falcons Finally Get Second-Ever Win Against Ranked TeamAfter defeating #13 San Diego State last Saturday, Air Force is now 2-74 against ranked teams in program history. The other victory came on Feb. 15, 1992, a 75-72 win over 21st-ranked UTEP at Clune Arena. All Losses to Teams With at Least a .500 RecordThe 11 teams that have beaten the Falcons this season have a combined record of 210-90 (.700 winning percentage) this season and all 11 currently have at least a .500 record. Five of the teams, Wagner, Gonzaga, New Mexico, UNLV and San Diego State, have at least 20 wins this season. Third-Fewest Points Ever in a VictoryAir Force’s 42 points against Eastern Michigan on Dec. 30 were the third-fewest in a victory in school history and the fewest since a 39-36 win over Cornell on Dec. 29, 1981. The school record for fewest points in a victory is a 30-19 win over Regis on Dec. 12, 1978. AFA Overcomes Largest Deficit Of Season at WyomingAir Force’s rally from a 14-point deficit against Wyoming on Feb. 15 was the largest this season and the largest since overcoming an 18-point deficit against Sam Houston State (W, 76-65) on Dec. 28, 2010.It was also the largest deficit Air Force has overcome against a Mountain West opponent since Jan. 9, 2007, when Air Force rallied from a 21-point first-half deficit to beat New Mexico, 65-57, at Clune Arena. Fletcher 15th on Career Assist ListWith his two assists against Texas-Pan American on Jan. 9, junior Todd Fletcher became the 22nd player in school history to dish out 200 career assists. The school began keeping assists as a season total in 1972. He his currently ranked 15th on the school’s career list with 235 assists. Broekhuis, Williams Each Pick Up First Career Double-DoubleJunior Taylor Broekhuis played arguably the best game of his career in the championship game of the All-Military Classic on Nov. 12 against VMI. The 6-10 center from Colorado Springs scored 18 points, two shy of his career high, and pulled down a career-best 12 rebounds to post the first double-double of his career. His 12 rebounds were the most by a Falcon in one game since Jacob Burtschi hauled down 12 at Stanford on Nov. 15, 2006. Broekhuis collected his second career double-double on Jan. 14 at Boise State with 15 points and 10 boards.Kamryn Williams posted his first career double-double on Jan. 9 against Texas-Pan American with 11 points and a career-high 10 rebounds, including seven on the offensive end. His seven offensive rebounds were the most by a Falcon in one game since Burtschi had seven vs. IPFW on Dec. 31, 2005. Lyons Returns to Conference Stat LeadersAfter playing against San Diego State last Saturday, junior Michael Lyons has now played in 75 percent of Air Force’s games this season, once again making him eligible for the Mountain West statistical charts. Lyons is currently No. 3 in scoring in the league (15.6 ppg), No. 3 in field-goal percentage (46.9%) and No. 8 in free-throw percentage (74.6%) for all games.In conference games only, he is second in scoring (14.8 ppg), third in 3-point percentage (43.4%) and fourth in field-goal percentage (44.4%). Carter Ties School Record for Steals in First Career GameFive freshmen saw action for Air Force during the opening weekend, but none had a better start than Chris Carter. The 6-3 guard from Port St. Lucie, Fla., had nine points, seven rebounds and seven steals in his first career game against Army. His seven steals tied the school record for one game and were the most by a Falcon since Tim Anderson, the 2007-08 Mountain West Defensive Player of the Year, had seven against San Diego State at the Mountain West Tournament on March 13, 2008. Lyons in Search of 1,000 PointsJunior Michael Lyons is on track to become the 23rd player in Air Force history to reach the 1,000-point plateau. Lyons, who has appeared in 81 career games, has 935 career points and is 31st on the school’s career scoring list. The last Falcon to join the 1,000-point club was Matt McCraw in 2007. The last junior to join the club was Otis Jones in 1994. Fitzgerald No. 9 on AFA’s Career 3-Point Percentage ListJunior Mike Fitzgerald attempted his 150th career 3-pointer on Jan. 3 against Johnson & Wales, making him eligible for Air Force’s career list for three-point percentage. Fitzgerald is shooting 39.1 percent (77-for-197) for his career, placing him No. 9 on the list. Falcons 19th in the Nation in Scoring DefenseAir Force is ranked 19th in the nation (338 teams ranked) in scoring defense according to the national Division I statistical summary released by the NCAA on Monday, Feb. 20. The Falcons are allowing just 59.6 points per game. 60 Points Seems to be the KeyAir Force is 9-7 this season when it scores 60 points or more and 4-5 when scoring less than 60. The four wins are against Wright St. (55-34), Eastern Michigan (42-37), Wyoming (58-53) and SDSU (58-56).Defensively speaking, the Falcons are 10-2 when allowing less than 60 points and 3-10 when allowing 60 or more. Still a Great Record at CluneIncluding their 10-6 record this season, the Falcons have been hard to beat at Clune Arena the last eight seasons. Since the beginning of the 2003-04 season, Air Force has won 105 of its 141 home games, good for a .745 winning percentage. In addition, the Falcons have won 41 of their 70 Mountain West games at Clune during that same stretch (.586 pct). No Offensive Boards, Not a ProblemAir Force had zero offensive rebounds against Wyoming on Feb. 15, the first time that has happened since Feb. 15, 2003. Interestingly, Air Force won that game as well, 80-75 over Colorado State. In fact, Air Force had just three offensive boards last Saturday against San Diego State and had zero second chance points combined in those two games.