Thursday, October 27, 2016

No. 17 WVU returns home to take on Oklahoma State

WVU's Nathan Adrian (11) (Photo Credit: Shanna Ros, BGS)

WVU’s Nathan Adrian (11)
(Photo Credit: Shanna Ros, BGS)

MORGANTOWN, W.Va.–After a three game road trip, No.17 West Virginia returns home to the Coliseum to take on Oklahoma State on Saturday afternoon.

The Mountaineers  (13-1, 2-0 Big 12) finished their three game swing with a perfect record, topping it off with a sloppy 95-87 win over TCU on Monday.

WVU set season highs in fouls (33), turnovers (22) and missed 13 free throws.

The duo of Jaysean Paige and Tarik Phillip came up big for the Mountaineers like they had done much of the road trip.

WVU trailed the Horned Frogs by seven before Paige and Phillip got hot in the second half.

Paige scored 18 of his 20 points in the second half and Phillip had 14 of his 18.

The two have combined 20.4 points, 6.7 rebounds, 64 assists and 42 steals in 14 games.

Tarik Phillip (12) (Photo Credit: Shanna Rose, BGS)

Tarik Phillip (12)
(Photo Credit: Shanna Rose, BGS)

“We say all the time we may not have the best five, but we’ve got the best 10,” Paige said. “As long as we have the best 10 on the court we can continue to win games.”

The Cowboys (9-5, 1-1 Big 12) are coming off a 79-62 loss at Baylor on Tuesday.  The Bears outrebounded OSU 44-18.

Prior to the loss against Baylor, the Cowboys had a +2.9 rebounding margin and had dominated opponents on the boards.

Things are not going to get easier for OSU when it takes on the Mountaineers.

“Press Virginia” leads the nation in steals, turnovers created and they also rank second in the country in offensive rebounds per game at 17.3 per game. Forward Jonathan Holton ranks eighth in the country with 4.07 offensive rebounds per game.

The Cowboys are led by senior guard Jeff Newberry. He averages 11.9 points per game and 5.7 rebounds.

“He’s played extremely well,” WVU head coach Bob Huggins said of Newberry. “He’s played really, really well against us. Great athlete, shoots the ball really well. They run some isos for him. He’s turned out to be a really good Big 12 player.”

The 6-foot-2, 185-pound Newberry scored 23 points in last season’s 81-72 loss in Morgantown.

Junior forward Leyton Hammonds averages 10.5 points and freshman guard Jawun Events averages 10.2 points for OSU.

The Cowboys are 0-1 on the road this season and 3-2 on neutral courts.

WVU preparing for Eastern Kentucky  (Photo Credit: Shanna Rose, BGS)

WVU preparing for Eastern Kentucky
(Photo Credit: Shanna Rose, BGS)

Last season WVU swept the season series. OSU is 1-2 against the Mountaineers at the Coliseum.

The Cowboys will be without senior guard Phil Forte, who has been sidelined with an elbow injury since Nov. 19.

Tipoff is scheduled for 1 p.m. and is televised on ESPNU.



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