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West Virginia Falls Big to Kentucky in Big 12/SEC Challenge

 The West Virginia women’s basketball team traveled to Kentucky on Wednesday night for a Big 12/SEC challenge game, falling, 83-60.

Kentucky was led on the night by senior guard Rhyne Howard who notched 27 points total while redshirt junior forward Dre’una Edwards sank 19 points to lead the Wildcats.

West Virginia was led on the night offensively by junior guard Kirsten Deans who posted a team-high 20 points. Junior forward Esmery Martinez also put up 14 points to lead the Mountaineers as the only scorers in double figures.

The night began a back and forth affair in the first quarter, but Howard led the way for Kentucky jumping out to a 5-0 lead two minutes into regulation following a three-pointer. West Virginia junior guard Kirsten Deans hit a two-pointer and a three-pointer halfway through the first quarter.

Howard continued to score the rest of the opening quarter with another three-pointer for a four-point advantage with three minutes left, 14-0. Another Wildcat scorer in Edwards made a layup before the quarter ended before a Mountaineer fifth year senior Blessing Ejiofor layup to place the score at a one-point advantage, 17-16.

The Wildcat Edwards scored 19 points while Howard dropped 27 points into the bucket to lead Kentucky on the night. The pair of Kentucky players were the only Wildcats to post double digits on the night in the dominant offensive showing and shot 50% from the field on the night.

Kentucky sophomore guard Treasure Hunt nailed a three-pointer a minute into the second quarter. Hunt dropped in a layup to knot the game at 21 points apiece three minutes into the second quarter. Freshman guard Jada Walker posted a three-pointer halfway into the quarter before putting up a layup for the three-point lead.

Edwards continued to score to end the second half putting in a layup and three-pointer through the final five minutes of the second quarter to take the lead, 40-31.

Deans continued to put the ball into the basket for West Virginia into the second half knocking down a three-pointer as well as a layup and two-point jumper three minutes into the half. Edwards hit a three with 37 seconds remaining in the third quarter for the 15-point, 60-45 lead. Howard was able to score 10 points through the third quarter with a three-point jumper leading the way.

Edwards found the basket from the three-point line three minutes into the fourth quarter to take a 26-point advantage. Howard’s scoring didn’t stop there for the night as the senior knocked down a three-pointer with four minutes left in the game.

That didn’t stop Kentucky from continuing their romping over West Virginia as the Wildcats hit some free throws to take the wide margin victory, 83-60.

West Virginia will now come home to Morgantown to host Charlotte next Sunday, Dec. 7, inside the Coliseum at 7 p.m.

Photo by Dale Sparks, All Pro Photography

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