WVU basketball: Kentucky downs Mountaineers in second half

MORGANTOWN, WV - JANUARY 27: PJ Washington /

The WVU basketball team blew another big lead and lost in heartbreaking fashion. Kentucky pulled past the Mountaineers in the second half.

West Virginia built a 15-point halftime lead but couldn’t sustain any offensive momentum in the second half. The Wildcats won, 83-76, to help the SEC claim a victory in the annual Big 12/SEC Challenge.

The Mountaineers jumped out to an early 10-3 lead but Kentucky still battled back to make most of the first half interesting. A nice run by West Virginia to close out the first frame appeared to show that the team had shaken off some other bugs and was finally ready to get down to business in the second half.

Instead, the WVU basketball team showed once again that it may just be the worst second half team in the Big 12. Kentucky made the halftime adjustments and absolutely rolled the Mountaineers. This has been the case in all five of the WVU basketball team’s losses this season. Now, the Mountaineers have lost four of their last five games.

Jevon Carter led the Mountaineers with 26 points. James Bolden hit several key 3-pointers, but it ended up not being enough. Bolden scored 17 points. Sagaba Konate had 13 points and six of West Virginia’s 34 rebounds. Kentucky dominated on the glass by grabbing 49 rebounds. Jarred Vanderbilt had 11 rebounds.

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The man of the hour for Kentucky was Kevin Knox who scored 34 points. He knocked down five 3-pointers. The Wildcats were 23 of 29 from the foul line and got to the charity stripe 11 more times than the WVU basketball team.

The Wildcats shot the ball better than the Mountaineers in every category from field goals (44.8 percent to 39.7 percent), 3-pointers (44.4 percent to 41.7 percent) and from he foul line (79.3 percent to 66.7 percent).

There is still time for the Mountaineers to correct these mistakes. However, it’s becoming clear than these aren’t just common mistakes. This is who the Mountaineers are and this is the team to expect each time out.

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The WVU basketball team is now 16-5 and plays again on Wednesday at Iowa State. ISU was blown out by Tennessee on Saturday.