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Oklahoma State Runs Away with Game, Blowing Out West Virginia, 81-58

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Photo: Julia Mellett / WVSN

The road struggles continue for West Virginia. Oklahoma State blew out WVU, 81-58 at Gallagher-Iba Arena, after the Mountaineers made one field goal in a 12-minute time frame.

With 16:30 left in the game, Taz Sherman drove on the baseline, throwing down a tomahawk dunk to cut the deficit to eight points. This field goal was the first made basket by WVU (14-10, 3-8 Big12) since the first half. The Mountaineers shot 1-of-19 from the 4:50 mark in the first half to the 12:37 mark in the second half; West Virginia shot 32 percent from the field, making 7-of-27 threes on Saturday.

Oklahoma State (12-12, 5-7 Big 12) found a way to exploit West Virginia’s good defense: back-cut dunks. On multiple occasions, a WVU defender would help the ball handler and the Cowboy would find a big man cutting to the rim for an alley-oop dunk every time. It would usually be OSU big man Moussa Cisse slamming it down on West Virginia. Cisse dominated the Mountaineer big men all game, finishing with 18 points and 10 rebounds.

The Cowboys were able to extend their second half lead to 20 with 14 minutes to go. A timeout by WVU head coach Bob Huggins resulted in West Virginia going small, with Malik Curry and Seth Wilson coming into the game to change the pace. Curry and Wilson were able to get some offense going, which was more than one field goal in 12 minutes. Curry ended the day with 13 points, while Wilson had five.

West Virginia’s lack of great big man play really showed against Oklahoma State, as the Cowboys killed the Mountaineers in points in the paint and rebounding. OSU scored 40 points in the paint. WVU struggled the entire day to get any layup to fall through, shooting 4-of-18 from just a couple of feet out. The Cowboys out-rebounded West Virginia, 48-24. WVU forward Gabe Osabuohien led the Mountaineers in rebounds with an astounding four on the stat sheet before two technicals sent him out of the game in the final minute.

Senior guard Sean McNeil knocked down a three-pointer to give the Mountaineers an early 8-2 lead. The Kentucky native had nine points in the first half, before going quiet in the second.

Notable scorers from West Virginia were Curry (13), Sherman (12), and McNeil (12).

West Virginia will now make a quick stop to Manhattan, Ks., to take on Kansas State on Monday night. The Mountaineers and Wildcats are set to tip off at 7 p.m. on ESPN2.

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Ethan Bock is pursuing his bachelor’s degree in journalism at WVU. He currently is an intern with the Final Fourcast podcast. Ethan has covered WVU football and men’s basketball for the last year. He is from Cincinnati, Ohio.

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