The West Virginia Mountaineers beat the Cincinnati Bearcats 77-74 in overtime to move to 15-5 and 5-2 in Big East play. This is the fourth game this season that has come down to overtime for the Mountaineers. They are 3-1 in those games. The Mountaineers are now tied for second place in the Big East.
The game was controlled early by the Mountaineers. They led by 9 with 3:52 left in the first half before a run by the Bearcats gave them a 33-32 lead going in to the half. The Bearcats led the majority of the second half, but the Mountaineers were able to keep it close enough to tie it with a Gary Browne 3 with only 14 seconds remaining. Truck Bryant lost control of the ball after a missed jumper from Dion Dixon. This let time expire and sent the game into overtime.
The first points in overtime came with 3:19 left on a pair of free throws from Kevin Jones. The Bearcats were able to pull within 1 after a Sean Kilpatrick 3 point jumper. In the next Bearcat possession Gary Browne made the steal and the layup to make it a 3 point game once again. The Mountaineers would hold on the lead after a tip shot from Jaquon Parker was matched with a jumper from Deniz Kilicli.
The Mountaineers are continuing to get excellent play from Kevin Jones. The run made by the Bearcats in the first half came with Jones on the bench in foul trouble. Jones recorded another double-double with 26 points and 13 rebounds. Browne and Kilicli each had 13 points and combined for 16 rebounds. Jabarie Hinds had 12 points as well. Truck Bryant had “one of those games.” He was only 2-16 (12.5%) on the afternoon. As a team, the Mountaineers were 43.7% in field goal attempts, 26.1% from 3-point range, and 69.2% from the line.
The Bearcats were led by Cashmere Wright. He had 17 points and 7 rebounds. Dion Dixon and Sean Kilpatrick each had had 12 points and combined for 8 rebounds. The Bearcats were 40.3% from the floor, 30.4% from 3-point range, and 60% from the line.
The Mountaineers will have a few days to recover before they head to Madison Square Garden to f ace the St. John’s Red Storm (8-11, 2-6 BE) on January 25th.