STILLWATER–Jaysean Paige came off the bench and scored 17 points to lead No.14 West Virginia past Oklahoma State on Saturday.
Devin Williams earned his league-leading 13th double-double with 13 points and 15 rebounds.
Joe Burton tallied 16 points for the Cowboys and Tavarius Shine had 12.
The Mountaineers had a 42-25 advantage on the glass and made 27 of 37 from the free throw line.
“For the most part, we shot it pretty well from the free throw line, Devin did a great job rebounding the ball on the defensive end for us today, and he and Jon (Holton), Nate (Adrian) and a host of others kept balls alive for us,” head coach Bob Huggins said. “That’s what we’ve got to do. That’s what this team has to do.”
“Press Virginia” forced 19 turnovers, leading to 20 points. WVU had 11 steals.
The Mountaineers fell behind midway through the first half but used a 10-1 run to take the lead back. Jevon Carter hit a 3-pointer with one second to go to give WVU a 33-29 lead at the break.
The Mountaineers started the second half right where it left off using an 11-2 run over the first 5:08 to take a 44-31 lead.
Oklahoma State refused to go away and went on a 9-2 run to pull within six after Leyton Hammonds completed a three-point play with 11:35 left.
WVU would go on yet another run to distance itself from the Cowboys, who never got closer than within nine.
Oklahoma State began the game on a 7-2 run, forcing Huggins to call timeout.
The Mountaineers’ pressure defense would cause problems for the Cowboys and WVU capitalized with a 7-0 run.
“They’re low on numbers,” Huggins said. “They don’t have subs and we made them work really hard. When your power forward (Leyton Hammonds) has to come down and help break pressure that’s not what he normally does – and that’s the whole philosophy of what we’re trying to do.”
Oklahoma State heated up from 3-point range and took a 24-16 lead when Burton sunk the Cowboys’ sixth 3-pointer. WVU would answer with a 17-5 run to end the first half on top.
With Oklahoma’s loss, the Mountaineers have sole possession of second place in the Big 12.
The 11 conference victories match WVU’s Big 12 win total from last season. The Mountaineers have their most wins since joining the conference in 2012.
Huggins earned his 787th career win, surpassing Lefty Driesell for ninth on the all-time wins list in Division I basketball. Huggins is just one victory behind Cliff Ellis.
WVU returns home to battle Texas Tech on Wednesday at 7 p.m. for senior night.
Quotes Courtesy of WVUsports.com