By Sandeep Chandok:
Winning a game leading into the Mountain West Tournament would have been momentous for the Spartans — they didn’t get that win.
Saturday’s 74-62 loss to Wyoming (18-13, 8-10 MW) was the fourth in a row for San Jose State (14-15, 7-11 MW) which will now have to put this disastrous regular season closure in the rearview and start with a clean slate come Tuesday.
Despite the final 12-point margin, SJSU hung around with Wyoming for most of the game, lingering behind by five points at the half, 36-31.
The difference in the game, well, was a threesome of elements: ball-protection, long-range buckets and equalized scoring — all of which were in favor of the Cowboys.
SJSU coughed up the rock 20 times compared to Wyoming’s 14 with Brandon Clarke, Jaycee Hillsman and Jalen James having four giveaways each.
11 triples were poured in by the Cowboys on their 21 attempts compared to the Spartans’ measly 5-13 effort.
Five players tallied double-digit points for Wyoming as to just two for SJSU by way of Clarke’s 20 and Ryan Welage’s 19. Far behind Welage was Brandon Mitchell with seven for the Spartans.
If SJSU wants to have any success in the postseason, more guys will have to score — simple.
As for head coach Dave Wojcik — he will not receive an automatic one-year extension as the loss concludes a losing season for the Spartans.
The team now has three days to rest, prepare and mentally wash away the regular season and revamp itself for the Mountain West Tournament where a first round 8-9 matchup with Utah State is looming — SJSU being the #8-seed.
Sin City’s Thomas & Mack Center is the host site for the tourney that begins Wednesday at 11 a.m. with the Spartans and Aggies.