No. 25 Boise State coach Leon Rice often finds himself a little restless when having to ready for Air Force, and this time, he has less than a day to do it. The Falcons took down three-time defending conference tournament champion New Mexico on Wednesday, 68-61. The Falcons shot 65 percent in the second half against the Lobos.
"They're a Rubik's Cube, they're one of the hardest problems to solve," Rice said last month before facing Air Force.
The Broncos swept the Falcons in the regular season, winning 77-68 on the road Jan. 24 and 67-42 at Taco Bell Arena on Feb. 11. Air Force coach Dave Pilipovich had glowing words for the Broncos, who have raked in Mountain West awards the last few days.
"Player of the Year, Newcomer of the Year, Coach of the Year, bus driver of the year," Pilipovich said. "They're really good."
On Wednesday afternoon, UNLV defeated Nevada 67-46. After the game, Nevada coach David Carter was fired.
BRONCO WOMEN IN MW FINAL: The Broncos' women's basketball team will play in Friday's Mountain West championship after defeating San Jose State 76-67 in the semifinals Wednesday.
Freshman Shalen Shaw led the way with 20 points for Boise State (21-10). San Jose State shot 39.7 percent, including 8-of-27 from 3-point range. The Broncos also got 19 points from sophomore guard Brooke Pahukoa and 11 points from senior Deanna Weaver.
The championship game is at 1 p.m. MT Friday, where the Broncos will face No. 2-seed New Mexico (20-11).
MOUNTAIN WEST SCHEDULES
(at LAS VEGAS)
Wednesday’s first round
No. 9 Air Force 68, No. 8 New Mexico 61
No. 7 UNLV 67, No. 10 Nevada 46
No. 1 Boise State (24-7) vs. No. 9 Air Force (14-16), 1 p.m. (CBS Sports Network)
No. 4 Wyoming (22-9) vs. No. 5 Utah State (18-12), 3:30 p.m. (CBS Sports Network)
No. 2 San Diego State (24-7) vs. No. 7 UNLV (18-14), 7 p.m. (CBS Sports Network)
No. 3 Colorado State (26-5) vs. No. 6 Fresno State (15-16), 9:30 p.m. (CBS Sports Network)
TBD, 7 p.m. (CBS Sports Network)
TBD, 9:30 p.m. (CBS Sports Network)
TBD, 4 p.m. (CBS)
(At LAS VEGAS)
Monday’s first round
No. 8 San Jose State 99, No. 9 Utah State 85
No. 7 San Diego State 70, No. 10 Nevada 48
No. 6 Wyoming 70, No. 11 Air Force 48
No. 8 San Jose State 64, No. 1 Colorado State 55
No. 4 Boise State 64, No. 5 UNLV 46
No. 2 New Mexico 57, No. 7 San Diego State 56
No. 3 Fresno State 74, No.6 Wyoming 66
No. 4 Boise State 76, No. 8 San Jose State 67
No. 2 New Mexico (19-11) vs. No. 3 Fresno State (22-8), 9:30 p.m.
No. 4 Boise State (21-10) vs. New Mexico/Fresno State, 1 p.m. (MW Network)