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WVU drops Big 12 opener to Kansas

LAWRENCE, Kan.— Udoka Azubuike scored 17 points and grabbed 11 rebounds as No. 4 Kansas came from behind to beat No. 16 West Virginia 60-53 in both teams’ Big 12 opener on Saturday.

Devon Dotson tallied 16 points and Marcus Garrett finished with 12 points and six assists for the Jayhawks (11-2).

Oscar Tshiebwe had 17 points and 17 boards for the Mountaineers (11-2). Miles McBride added 13.

In the first half, WVU was in control and led by as many as 10 points before the Mountaineers went cold in the second half.

Tshiebwe dominated in the first on all aspects of the court. He had 15 points and 10 rebounds while getting it done on the defensive side.

“Beautiful thing about Oscar is Oscar is Oscar. He doesn’t try to be anything else,” head coach Bob Huggins said. “He’s really good at what he does. You don’t have to worry about him going out and dribbling it between his legs and losing it, or jacking up 3s. Oscar knows who he is. He is happy with who he is. He’s pretty damn good at who he is.”

But the Kansas shut him down after the half. The rest of the Mountaineers’ offense couldn’t get going either.

Azubuike slammed an alley-oop over Tshiebwe to end an 8-0 run and put Kansas ahead 45-38.

Taz Sherman’s jumper pulled WVU within three with 1:30 to play but Garrett responded with a layup.

“We didn’t stick to the game plan,” Huggins said. “We got a bunch of young guys, and we were trying to play a bunch of guys, and I think we had some (bad) combinations out there at both ends.”

The Jayhawks won their 28th straight conference opener. The loss was the Mountaineers’ eighth consecutive loss in Allen Fieldhouse.

WVU returns to action on Monday at Oklahoma State.

Shanna Rose
WVU Graduate with a bachelor's in journalism and multimedia journalist. Sports Fan and sports writer. Former WVU News reporter. Contact Shanna on Twitter @SMR1837
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