MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – For the sixth time in the last seven games, West Virginia found itself on the wrong side of the boxscore, losing this time 73-62 to the Oklahoma Sooners.
The Mountaineers’ (19-10, 7-9 Big 12) offense struggled again Saturday, shooting just 34.3% (24-70) from the floor and 16% (4-25) from three. They also went 10-19 from the free-throw line. The second-worst free-throw shooting team in the Big 12, the Mountaineers are 28-55 from the foul line in their last three contests.
Oklahoma’s (18-11, 8-8) big three of Kristian Doolittle, Brady Manek and Austin Reaves did not get off to a great start in the game. The trio combined for just 14 points on 6-20 shooting in the first half.
Despite this, the Sooners still held a 25-21 lead at halftime. The Mountaineers shot just 9-33 in the first half, including 1-10 from three. WVU did not score a single point in the final 5:43 of the first half.
It was WVU’s defense that struggled to start the second half. Through the first 7:30 minutes of the second half, the Sooners scored 23 points to the Mountaineers’ 10. Every time WVU scored in that span, Oklahoma responded with points of its own.
Oklahoma ended up out-scoring WVU 48-41 in the second half. The Sooners shot 61.5% (16-26) in the half. Manek (15), Doolittle (18) and Reaves (13) ended up combining for 46 points with Jamal Bieniemy chipping in 12 of his own.
Miles McBride led West Virginia with 13 points. Oscar Tshiebwe was the team’s next leading scorer with nine points and 10 rebounds. Derek Culver struggled from the floor, scoring just five points on 2-11 shooting with eight rebounds.
The Mountaineers have one week left in the regular season, playing at Iowa State on Tuesday and hosting No. 2 Baylor Saturday in the regular-season finale.