Mountaineers Defense Holds off Sooners
|Field Goal %||42.3||44.6|
|Three Point %||36.0||37.5|
|Free Throw %||66.7||89.5|
The #19 West Virginia Mountaineers (18-6 7-4) went into Norman, Oklahoma and grinded the game out in the second half to upset the #17 Oklahoma Sooners (16-7 6-5). It’s their third straight win over the Sooners.
Oklahoma took 14-9 lead in the first six minutes of the game until West Virginia forward Lamont West ended his shooting slump came off the bench and hit five straight threes’, igniting a 17-2 run. “We’ve all been, as a staff, just shoot the ball man.” said West Virginia head coach Bob Huggins.
The Mountaineers held a ten-point lead with 9:39 to in the first half after Daxter Miles Jr converts on the lay-up and forces Oklahoma head coach Lon Kruger to take a thirty second timeout.
The Sooners cut the lead to just two after Esa Ahmad fouled Brady Manek while shooting a three and he would 3-3 from the line.
West Virginia forward Sagaba Konate would cap off a 7-2 run with a dunk, giving the Mountaineers a 39-32 advantage.
Jevon Carter ended the half with a little jumper and West Virginia would take a ten-point lead into halftime. Carter finished the first 20 minutes with four points, seven assists and two steals.
West lead the Mountaineers in the first half with 15 points, with all his shots coming from three-point range, going 5-6. Sagaba Konate was also in double figures with 10 points.
The Mountaineers score 50 points in the first half. It was the second straight half they scored 50 points.
West Virginia was hot from the floor, hitting 21-37 (56.8%) and 8-13 (61.5%) from three, keeping pace with the #1 Scoring offense in the country.
Both teams would cool off in the second half. They combined for 1-19 from the field to start the second half.
Oklahoma scored the first five points, until Jevon Carter ended the Mountaineers five-and-a-half-minute scoring drought with beautiful scoop and score down the lane.
West Virginia took their largest lead of the game (11) after another Sags Dunk with 12:39 to go in the game.
The Mountaineers took their final timeout with just over nine minutes to play in the game and they were having trouble getting shots to fall and Oklahoma was slowly chipping away at the lead.
Trae Young would make a miraculous lay-up bouncing the ball on top of the backboard before it would fall through the net to cut the lead to 3, with 6:23 to go in the game. All the momentum was starting to shift towards the Sooners.
West Virginia outscored Oklahoma 6-2 over the next four minutes and it was Esa Ahmad going down the lane and dunking the ball to finish off the run.
The Sooners went on an 8-2 run in about two-and-a half-minutes to cut the lead to 1 with 24 seconds to go in the game.
The Mountaineers ran 11 seconds off the clock before Esa Ahmad was fouled and went to the line to try and extend the lead to three with 13 seconds to go in the game.
Ahmad would hit the first free throw and then miss the second and Oklahoma had a chance to win or tie the game. The West Virginia defense made Young give the ball up to Rashard Odomes in the paint and he could not convert.
West Virginia would hold Trae Young to his lowest assist total of the season (1). “I don’t know” said Huggins on being asked how they held Young to one assist.
“The guy (Jevon Carter) that’s guarding him his pretty good. He’s not going to play against anybody better than they guy that guarded him today. He was the National Defensive Player of the Year for a reason.” said Huggins.
Jevon Carter had four of his six steals in the second half, leading the team in holding the Sooners to under 16 points of their scoring average for the second time.
Sagaba Konate got his sixth double-double of the year, with 14 points and 11 rebounds.
This is a huge win for the Mountaineers and its their last road Big Monday game of the year.
West Virginia shot 26.5% (9-34) from the field in the second half on the road and found a way to win the game.
This is the team Mountaineer fans were used to seeing during their 15-game winning streak earlier in the year. A team that was finding ways to win.
The Mountaineers take on Oklahoma State this Saturday in Morgantown at noon.