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Huggins and Mountaineers looking to slow down Jayhawks

Since West Virginia has joined the Big 12, they have never beaten Kansas on the road. On Saturday, they will look to slow down the Jayhawks and beat Kansas on the road for the first time ever.

West Virginia (13-2, 2-1 Big 12) have won two straight conference games against Kansas State and Oklahoma State and are set to begin a brutal three-game stretch on Saturday. The Mountaineers defeated Oklahoma State on Tuesday, 70-60. Jalen Bridges and Gabe Osabuohien combined for 34 points and 13 rebounds.

Head coach Bob Huggins said Bridges has been really good as of late and he is a valuable piece when you your main scorers are not scoring as many points on a given night.

“Everybody has had ups and downs. I think that’s part of what happens and that’s why it’s important to have other people to kind of pick up what they weren’t able to do that particular game,” Huggins said. “[Bridges has] been really good. He’s as coachable a guy you’ll ever be around. He’s a guy who can do a lot of things and who can play a lot of positions for us.”

Bridges and West Virginia will be facing a veteran heavy Kansas (13-2, 2-1 Big 12) squad. The Jayhawks beat No. 15 Iowa State 62-61 on Tuesday after falling to then-No. 25 Texas Tech on Saturday. Kansas is led by Ochai Agbaji and Christian Braun. Agbaji is a senior; averaging 20.6 points per game, and leads the Big 12 in scoring. Braun, a junior, currently averages 16.1 points per game.

“They make shots, they penetrate, defensively they’re pretty good,” Huggins said of Kansas. As for Agbaji, Huggins said he has improved his game by just being more of an athlete. “I think [Agbaji’s] probably using his athleticism probably a little bit more. He’s a heck of an athlete. I think he’s got a little more versatility.”

The Mountaineers are headed to Allen Fieldhouse where they have not won a game ever. Huggins said his team needs to stick to what they do, rather than focus on the crowd and the noise.

“We just need to go in and play. I don’t think the fieldhouse has ever beat us,” Huggins said.

West Virginia and Kansas are set to tip off at 2 p.m. in Lawrence, Kansas, and the game can be streamed on CBS.

Photo by Dale Sparks, All Pro Photography

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