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West Virginia looking for statement win in Austin on Saturday night

After getting their first Big 12 victory over Texas Tech in Morgantown earlier this week, the West Virginia women’s basketball team is back in action at No. 12 Texas this Saturday inside the Erwin Center.

While the Mountaineers (8-5, 1-2 Big 12) were able to handle Texas Tech with the play of some solid defense, the Longhorns (11-3, 1-2 Big 12) narrowly fell to Kansas on Wednesday, 70-66. The defeat was Texas’ second straight Big 12 loss and turned the ball over a season-high 23 times. Both teams come into Saturday’s contest holding a sub-par conference record, each at a 1-2 mark in Big 12 play.

Texas proves why they are the ranked and more dominant team in this game in most statistical categories as the Longhorns average 78.3 points per game while the Mountaineers average 68.8 points per game. Texas hits 29.4 field goals a game while West Virginia hits 25.3 field goals per game and Texas also averages an extra three-pointer per game with 5.8 threes per contest as opposed to West Virginia’s 4.2 three-pointers knocked down per game.

The only shooting category that the Mountaineers lead the Longhorns is at the free throw line. Mike Carey’s squad shoots a 71.9% from the charity stripe while Vic Schaefer’s Longhorns shoot 63.5% from the free throw line. That doesn’t take away however from Texas’ 22.2-point differential scoring margin they average against opponents.

Texas is also more aggressive on the glass where they average 39.9 rebounds per game as a team while West Virginia averages 37 rebounds per game. For steals, Texas leads Carey’s team with 10.5 steals as opposed to 9.2 steals per game while the Mountaineers average more blocks per matchup at 4.4 blocks per game.

Similar to the Red Raider team the Mountaineers played earlier in the week, the Longhorns boast four double-digit scorers led by junior guard Aliyah Matharu’s 15.2 points per game while senior guard Joanne Allen-Taylor’s 11.4 points per game paces the team in second place for scoring. The other pair of double figure scorers on the team are freshman guard Rori Harmon’s 10.9 points per game followed by sophomore forward DeYona Gaston’s 10 points per contest.

The leading rebounders for the Longhorns are senior forward Lauren Ebo with 6.5 rebounds per game while freshman forward Aliyah Moore averages five rebounds per matchup. Harmon and senior guard Audrey Warren lead the Longhorns on the defensive end of the floor with 29 and 24 steals, respectively.

West Virginia and Texas will tip-off from the Erwin Center on Saturday, January 15 at 7 p.m. CT with televising on Longhorn Network.

Photo by Dale Sparks, All Pro Photography

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