Air Force continues its two-game road trip to open Mountain West play by traveling to Fresno, Calif., to take on Fresno State Saturday, Dec. 30, at 4 p.m. PT at the Save Mart Center.
Television:. MW Network (Institutional)
Radio:........ KVOR AM 740 (Jim Arthur)
Quick Facts Air Force Fresno State
Record:............ 6-7 10-4
Conf. Record:... 0-1 0-1
Streak:............. L 1 L 1
Last Game:....... at New Mexico (12/27) at Nevada (12/27)
Result:............. L 58-87 L 65-80
Next Game:..... vs. Nevada (1/6) at Utah State (1/3)
Conference:..... Mountain West Mountain West
Nickname:....... Falcons Bulldogs
Location:.......... Colorado Springs, CO Fresno, CA
Website:.......... GoAirForceFalcons.com GoBulldogs.com
Category Air Force Fresno State
Head Coach..... Dave Pilipovich Rodney Terry
Alma Mater..... Thiel College, 1986 St. Edwards, 1990
School Record.. 78-101 (6th season) 115-101 (7th season)
Career Record.. Same Same
Overall........................ Fresno State leads, 17-6
First Meeting............... Nov. 28, 1990 at Fresno (Fresno State, 55-40)
Last Meeting................ Feb. 1, 2017 at Fresno (Fresno State, 73-64)
Streaks........................ Fresno State W1
Air Force and Fresno State are meeting for the 24th time. The Bulldogs lead the series 17-6. Air Force is 4-6 at home, 2-10 at Fresno and 0-1 in neutral site games. The teams split last season with each winning at home. Air Force snapped a seven-game Fresno State winning streak with an 81-72 victory in Clune Arena. Fresno State beat Air Force, 73-64, in Fresno. Air Force has lost eight straight at Fresno since a 72-62 win Jan. 15, 1995. The teams first played Nov. 28, 1980 in Fresno, Calif. The Bulldogs won, 55-40.
SEASON VS. FRESNO STATE
(Feb. 1, 2017 at Fresno) Deshon Taylor scored 25 points to lead Fresno State past Air Force, 73-64, Feb. 1 in a Mountain West game in Fresno.
Jahmel Taylor and Jaron Hopkins added 15 points each for the Bulldogs, who overcame an early 12-point deficit to take a 34-32 halftime lead. Fresno State used a 14-3 run in the second half to lead by as many as 10 points, 61-51, with 7:54 remaining. Air Force closed to within four points, 64-60, with 4:25 remaining, but couldn’t get any closer.
Fresno State shot 43.8 percent from the field and out-rebounded Air Force, 37-34. The Bulldogs also hit 25-of-32 from the free throw line.
Air Force was led by Frank Toohey, who scored 16 points and had five rebounds. Zach Kocur added 12 points and four rebounds while Hayden Graham chipped in with nine points and a team-best eight rebounds. The Falcons shot just 36.2 percent from the field, but hit a season-high 12 3-pointers in a season-high 35 attempts.
(Jan. 11, 2017 at USAFA) Hayden Graham scored a 21 points, grabbed eight rebounds and had a season-high six assists to lead Air Force past Fresno State, 81-72, at the Academy.
The Falcon surrendered the game’s first three points, but a three by Trevor Lyons tied it and a layup by Jacob Van gave the Falcons the lead for good. Air Force led for 37:32 of the game and held off every Fresno State rally in the second half.
Air Force led 37-33 at the half and used a 9-0 run early in the second half to take a 13 point lead, 54-41, with 12:02 remaining. Fresno State was never able to get closer than four points, 59-55, with 8:12 remaining. The Falcons hit 17 of 20 free throws from that point, including eight straight at one point. Air Force led by as many as 14 points in the second half.
Graham returned to the lineup after missing the Colorado State game due to illness. He added two blocks and hit eight of 13 field goals in 35 minutes. Lyons added a season-high 18 points, had four rebounds, four assists and two steals in 36 minutes. Van added 14 points and hit four straight free throws in the final minutes. Zach Kocur chipped in with 10 points and six rebounds while Ryan Manning added 10 points off the bench.
Air Force hit 51.9 percent from the field, including a 55.6 clip in the first half. The team has hit 50 percent or better five times this season, winning each game. The Falcons finished the game hitting 22 of 29 free throws (75.9 percent), had 16 assists and out-rebounded Fresno State, 39-23.
Fresno State hit 46.3 percent from the field, including just 34.6 percent from 3-point range. Paul Watson scored 20 points to lead the Bulldogs. Cullen Russo added 13 points and eight rebounds while Jahmel Taylor contributed 11 points.
AIR FORCE IN CONFERENCE OPENERS
Air Force is 11-26 all-time in conference openers, including a 9-9 mark in the Mountain West. The Falcons are 8-8 at home and 3-18 on the road. Air Force is 6-4 at home and 3-5 on the road in MW openers. Head Coach Dave Pilipovich is 3-2 in MW openers.
Air Force has won five of its last seven Mountain Openers. The only losses in the span came at San Diego State, 53-49, in 2015 and last season at Wyoming, 84-72. The program’s last win on the road in a MW opener came at Boise State, 74-59, in 2012. The team has lost two straight on the road since that win.
EARLIER THIS WEEK
New Mexico had six players score in double figures to beat Air Force, 87-58, Wednesday night in Dreamstyle Arena – The Pit in Albuquerque, N.M. in the Mountain West opener for each school.
The Lobos opened the second half with a 13-6 run to take a 49-26 lead with 14:25 remaining and never looked back. The closest Air Force got after that was 19 points, 60-41, with 9:14 left. UNM extended the lead to as many as 31 points on multiple occasions before finishing with the 29-point cushion.
Jachai Simmons had 15 points to lead the Lobos. Dane Kuiper added 13 points and Joe Furstinger chipped in with 12 points and 12 rebounds. Anthony Mathis scored 11, Sam Logwood 10 and Antino Jackson scored 10 points and dished out nine assists. The Lobos hit 50 percent from the field, including 63.3 in the second half. New Mexico finished 14 of 33 from 3-point territory.
Lavelle Scottie scored 12 points to lead Air Force. Jonathan DeWane added eight points and Ryan Swan chipped in with seven points and four rebounds. Freshman Keaton Van Soelen added five points and a team-best six rebounds. The Falcons hit just 37.9 percent from the field, including just 18.8 percent from three. Air Force out-rebounded New Mexico, 39-34, but had 17 turnovers.
The Falcons scored the first points of the game for just the fourth time this season with a Trevor Lyons layup at the 18:13 mark. The Lobos, leading 10-9 with 11:35 to play, used a 12-0 run to take a 22-9 lead with 7:27 left. The Falcons, who hit just 32.0 percent from the field in the first half, went 5:09 without a field goal before back-to-back layups by Pervis Louder to make it 25-15 with 5:58 left. The Lobos closed the half with an 11-5 spurt to take a 36-20 halftime lead.