Mountaineers Knock Off No. 15 Virginia
MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – West Virginia outbattled No. 15 Virginia to score a 68-61 victory Tuesday night at the WVU Coliseum.
Jevon Carter again was fantastic, finishing with 23 points and 10 rebounds, to go along with seven assists and two steals. It was Carter’s fourth career double-double. Lamont West also was big, tossing in 22 points, while Daxter Miles had 12. UVA got 19 points from Devon Hall and 18 from Kyle Guy.
The Mountaineers (8-1) next travel to Pittsburgh on Saturday for a renewal of their rivalry with Pitt (4-4), which has been dormant for the past five years. This rendition of the Backyard BasketBrawl will take place at the Peterson Events Center. It will tipoff at 8 p.m., and will be televised by ESPN2.
The Mountaineers played a strong first half Tuesday against UVA and took a 29-26 into the lockerroom at halftime. The normally deliberate Cavaliers turned the ball over seven times in the first 20 minutes. That may not sound like a lot against Press Virginia, but UVA came to Morgantown averaging just 8.9 turnovers a game. Virginia also had trouble shooting in the opening half, making just six-of-21 from the field and two-of-11 from three-point range.
West Virginia stayed on top for the first six minutes of the second half as well. But then UVA’s leading scorer, Kyle Guy, who had been averaging 16.6 points a game though he was scoreless for the first 26 minutes, suddenly went from ice cold to red hot.
He hit his first shot for the game at the 13:53 mark of the second half, a three ball from the corner. Then the sophomore guard nailed two more treys in quick succession, and WVU’s seven-point lead was completely erased, as the Cavs went on top 41-39. Carter countered with a three of his own, and the Mountaineers took a 42-41 advantage into the under 12 media timeout.
From that point, both teams heated up. Guy, who was 0-for-five from three in the first half, made six of his next eight from beyond the arc, and the foes exchanged the lead four times in an eight-minute stretch. But WVU also hit shots, and 2:57 left, a three by West gave the home club a 61-56 lead.
UVA wouldn’t fold either, though. It kept hitting threes, including a big one from Ty Jerome, to cut the Mountaineer advantage to 61-59 heading into the final two minutes. A couple free throws by West with 1:10 on the clock, and then a steal by Miles on the other end (UVA’s 13th turnover of the game) brought crowd to its feet as it smiled a victory. Carter canned two more free throws (WVU was 16-of-18 for the game from the line), and West Virginia held a 65-59 lead as the clock turned inside 40 seconds.
From there, the Mountaineers were able to fend off the Cavs (8-1) to secure their second win over UVA in as many years and take a 10-9 lead in the overall series.