Men's Basketball: WVU vs. Morehead St. Game Recap - WVU Football, WVU Basketball, News - Mountaineer Sports

Men's Basketball: WVU vs. Morehead St. Game Recap

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Nick Arthur -

Kevin Jones scored 23 points and the West Virginia Mountaineers defeated the Morehead State Eagles 83-48 on Tuesday night.

The game was played in Charleston, W.Va., at the Charleston Civic Center.

"This is a good game for us," said West Virginia senior guard Truck Bryant. "We've been getting better every day. It's just a great feeling to see that we're starting to gel as a team, and everybody is starting to know what their roles are."

The Mountaineers shot 52 percent from the floor and had four players in double figures.

West Virginia improved to 3-1 on the season.

"We needed this game," Bryant said. "This is just another confidence builder for the freshmen."

Morehead State led 4-3 in the first few minutes, but an ensuing 17-0 run by the Mountaineers proved to be the difference.  

West Virginia jumped out to a 25-9 lead in the first half, behind a strong shooting performance from senior forward Kevin Jones.

However, poor free throw shooting from the Mountaineers allowed Morehead State to hang around.

As a team, West Virginia was just 9-21 from the free throw line at halftime.

"I just didn't' think our concentration was very good," said West Virginia head coach Bob Huggins "We don't have anyone shooting in practice less than 73 percent. I can make them play hard, but I can't make them make free throws."

West Virginia shot 48 percent from the floor in the first half, while holding Morehead State to just 32 percent shooting.

"We have improved tremendously," Bryant said. "Defensively, we've been everywhere. I think we've just been doing a great job."

Kevin Jones had 12 points at halftime, and the Mountaineers took a 39-22 lead into the locker room.

The second half began similar to the first for West Virginia. A 13-2 run to start the half extended the Mountaineers' lead to 52-24 with less than 16 minutes remaining in the game.

Freshman guard Gary Browne had another impressive game. Browne's eighth point gave West Virginia its largest lead of the game, 61-31, with 11:52 left to play.

"Gary Browne has improved a lot," said West Virginia senior forward Kevin Jones. "He's had a tough time. The coaches have really been on him the last couple games. He stepped up really good for us tonight, and we're going to need him to keep improving."

Senior guard Truck Bryant made a fast-break layup after a steal by Browne, and the Mountaineers led 66-41 at the third media timeout.

Freshman guard Jabarie Hinds made an and-one layup with five minutes remaining. Hinds had eight points, and West Virginia had a 32 point lead, 73-41.

Multiple players contributed in West Virginia's win.

Freshman guard Paul Williamson nailed a three with two minutes remaining, and the Mountaineers led 80-43.

Senior guard Truck Bryant, junior forward Deniz Kilicli and Gary Browne all joined Jones in double figures.

"We're getting better," Jones said. "That's all we can ask from these young guys – take it one step at a time. Just keep progressing, and we tell them that every day."

West Virginia had 28 points in the paint.

The Mountaineers were 10-10 from the free throw line in the second half.

Morehead State senior guard Terrance Hill led all scorers with 24 points.

The Mountaineers have been successful at the Charleston Civic Center in recent seasons. Bob Huggins would like to continue to play at this venue in the future.

"I like playing here," Huggins said. "I like being able to play in this part of the state, down here where people can see us."

The West Virginia defense was able to force 23 Morehead State turnovers.

 

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