Mountaineers Fall to Longhorns in Overtime
|Field Goal %||41.9||56.9|
|Three Point %||26.9||57.9|
|Free Throw %||90.9||64.3|
The 20th ranked West Virginia Mountaineers (22-9 11-7) fall to the Texas Longhorns (18-13 8-10) in overtime 87-79.
Texas shot well above their season average in Big XII play and they did it without their star forward Mohamad Bamba. “They shot the ball. They shot the ball extremely, extremely well.” Said West Virginia head coach Bob Huggins.
West Virginia had a strong start to the game and it came from feeding forward Sagaba Konate, who scored six of the first 10 points for the Mountaineers and held a 10-5 lead in the first five minutes of the game.
The Longhorns outscored the Mountaineers 12-6 in the next four minutes to take a 17-16 lead. Texas went 4-4 from behind the arc and all four threes were made by four different players.
Both teams were efficient on offense, trading buckets and there was six lead changes and six ties in the first half.
The Mountaineers took a two-point lead into halftime 42-40. West Virginia didn’t lead in a lot of the stat lines but what gave them the edge was 15 points off 10 Texas turnovers.
They shot 49% (17-35) from the field and 30% (3-10) from three-point range, while going 5-5 from the free throw line.
A Texas team that has only averaged 7.5 made threes a game in conference play went 7-12 (58%) from behind the arc and 14-23 (61%) from the field.
West Virginia Forward Lamont West led the Mountaineers with 10 points. Forwards Teddy Allen and Sagaba both had 10.
The Mountaineers started the second half on a quick 6-2 run to take the six-point lead in under four minutes of play.
Texas forward Dylan Osetkowski hit back to back threes to start a 15-2 Longhorn run and they held a seven-point lead 57-50 with 9:59 left in the game.
West Virginia forward Esa Ahmad responded with back to back jumpers and a Beetle Bolden three tied the game up at 57 before Texas scored six straight to take the lead 63-57 at the 6:08 mark.
The Mountaineers took the lead back after a pair of free throws from Ahmad 68-67 with 2:40 left to go in the game. It was the first time West Virginia had the lead since there was just over 13 minutes left in the game.
Texas forward Jericho Sims gave the Longhorns a two-point lead with six seconds to go after going 1-2 from the free throw line.
With six seconds, West Virginia senior guard Jevon Carter would drive to the basket and make a reverse layup with 1.8 seconds to go and that would send the game to overtime.
The Mountaineers won the tip and Carter would go in for a layup to give them the early two-point lead.
Texas went on to score 11 straight points taking a nine-point lead and the Mountaineers could only get within six in the final minutes as the Longhorns closed the game out.
This is a tough loss for the Mountaineers as they had played well as of late and it looked like they reverted to the way they played during that skid of losing 5-6.
Rebounding was a big issue for the Mountaineers, especially in some crucial moments. “I wish we would have made a shot once in a while and guarded somebody. Maybe try to get a rebound. I just found out if you don’t try, very rarely do you get them.” Said Huggins.
A lot of credit must go to Texas. A team that was shooting 32.7% from three during Big XII play shot 58% (11-19). They were shooting 42.3% from the field and hit 57% (29-51).
Texas was in a win and you’re in scenario for the NCAA Tournament where as West Virginia looked like a team looking towards the post season.