In the second matchup of the season between West Virginia and Iowa State, the Mountaineers handed the Cyclones the victory with some sloppy play in the final seconds of the game, as ISU wins 84-81.
As West Virginia (14-14, 3-12 Big 12) was up 81-80 with 25 seconds remaining, Taz Sherman threw a pass intended for Jalen Bridges right to ISU’s (19-9, 6-9 Big 12) Izaiah Brockington to give the Cyclones the lead. One they wouldn’t relinquish.
Gabe Osabuohien knocked down a wide-open three at the end of the first half to give the Mountaineers a 41-31 lead heading into the break. Osabuohien has been quiet the last few games, but brought back his usual production. Osabuohien was all over the floor on defense. The most surprising factor that the fifth-year senior brought to the table was the scoring. Coming into the game, Osabuohien averaged 4.4 points per game with only two double-digit scoring performances this season. The Canada native ended the night with a career-high in points with 19.
After WVU went up 12 in the second half, ISU’s Brockington got the Cyclones right back into the game, hitting multiple field goals. With eight minutes to go, Brockington put Isaiah Cottrell on a poster, sending Hilton Coliseum into a frenzy and giving the Cyclones their first lead since the early first half. Luckily for West Virginia, guard Malik Curry went right down the floor, ending the noise as he buried a corner three. Brockington ended Wednesday night with 35 points and a career-high in threes with five.
Off the bench, Curry gave the Mountaineers great offensive production. The Delaware native hit a layup with just 90 seconds left in the game to give WVU an 81-79 lead. Curry ended the night with 19 points on 5-of-9 shooting.
West Virginia has struggled this season when it comes to their big men playing up to the rest of the Big 12. On Wednesday night, they played a huge difference. WVU out-rebounded Iowa State, 34-23.
Toward the end of the first half, fifth-year senior Dimon Carrigan met ISU’s Robert Jones in mid-air, blocking the shot and bringing it back down for the possession. Carrigan played well on Wednesday night, contributing on both sides of the floor.
Freshman guard Kobe Johnson made the start over Kedrian “Keddy” Johnson due to the senior guard dealing with hip issues. Kobe Johnson made his fourth career start for the Mountaineers. WVU head coach Bob Huggins mentioned once again on Monday night that he wants to get the younger players in more. Johnson played 19 minutes, finishing with two points.
Notable scorers for West Virginia were Curry (19), Osabuohien (19), and Sherman (15).
West Virginia will head back home after the two-game road trip to prepare to host No. 20 Texas on Saturday afternoon. The matchup between the Mountaineers and Longhorns will tip off at 2 p.m., with ESPN2 covering the game.