WVU beats No. 11 in final home game; Now on to Big 12 Tourney Play
MORGANTOWN, WV—-The WVU men’s basketball team (18-13) left no doubt that they belong in the NCAA tournament with its huge win over No. 11 Kansas State (23-8) Saturday 89-81. Before a sellout crowd of over 14,000 fans, the Mountaineers took control of their own destiny winning their last home game of the season.
Erik Stevenson, Kedrian Johnson, Tre Mitchell and Emmitt Matthews along with the seniors sang John Denver’s “Country Roads” to the delight of the Mountaineer faithful. Stevenson led the way with 27 points and Johnson followed with 23. Matthews added 20 and Mitchell 14 to prove that WVU belongs in the tournament. With the victory WVU now has a solid 90 percent chance of going to the big dance.
With the help of the sellout crowd WVU rallied from ten points down to take a 39-37 halftime lead and never trailed after that as they outscored the cats 50-44 in the second half. KSU went scoreless over nearly a three minute stretch and WVU was able to pad their lead at the free throw line going 7 of 8 on their way to the largest lead, 84-69 with just 2:42 left in the game.
The Mountaineers have apparently figured out how to start winning late in the season at the right time.
West Virginia (8) must now prove itself in the Big 12 tournament vs. Texas Tech (9) Wednesday March 8 at 7 p.m.