Big 12 Wire: West Virginia drops two

Emily Lingenfelter

Sports Blogger

@em_lingenfelter

 

Iowa State vs Kansas

Monday night marked top-ranked Kansas’ first of four Big Monday appearances this season. The Jayhawks traveled to Hilton Coliseum, where they dropped two straight matchups against Iowa State.

This time “Hilton Magic” wasn’t enough to upend the reigning Big 12 champions. KU held off ISU 76-72 after the Cyclones wiped out a 10-point deficit with under two minutes left. ISU forced 18 KU turnovers but was out rebounded by KU, 41-24.

The Jayhawks shot 54.8 percent (34-for-62) from the field, marking KU’s highest field goal percentage in any game this year.

 

Baylor vs Texas

The Longhorns took on No. 6 Baylor in Waco on Tuesday night. The Bears entered Tuesday’s game with one loss to Big 12 foe West Virginia. Texas, in pursuit of a second conference victory, came up short.

Baylor forward Johnathan Motley came up big in the Bears’ 74-64 victory after scoring single digits at WVU and Kansas State. Motley scored 32 points and collected 20 rebounds, both career highs. This made Motley only the fourth player in program history to record more than 30 points and 20 rebounds in a single game.

Texas freshman Jarrett Allen recorded his sixth double-double of the season in the loss. The Longhorns trailed by as many as 21 points but were able to pull back within 10 before time expired.

 

West Virginia vs Oklahoma

(Jackson Lavarnway, O'Colly)
(Jackson Lavarnway, O’Colly)

In arguably the biggest upset of the week, Oklahoma traveled to Morgantown on Wednesday to face the infamous press of Bob Huggins’ Mountaineers. Opponents of West Virginia are averaging 24.3 turnovers per game, a national high. The Sooners committed only 12 turnovers in their meeting.

OU trailed by as many as 15 but rallied back with an 18-3 run to tie the game with under five minutes left in regulation. Senior guard Jordan Woodard was afforded the opportunity to seal the victory at the free throw line with three seconds left but couldn’t finish it.

The Mountaineers’ Jevon Carter and Elijah Macon scored season highs, 23 and 13 points respectively. Their effort fell just short as Woodard drove the length of the court to lay in a shot with four seconds left, sealing the 89-87 victory. No. 7 West Virginia is the highest-ranked opponent OU has beaten in a true road contest since defeating KU at Allen Fieldhouse in 1993.

 

Texas Tech vs TCU

Reigning Big 12 Player of the Week Vladimir Brodziansky and the TCU Horned Frogs dropped a close one in Lubbock on Wednesday. Texas Tech outshot TCU at the charity stripe 31-9 in the Red Raiders’ 75-69 victory.

Tech’s Keenan Evans, Justin Gray and Zach Smith combined for 57 of the Raiders’ points in the contest. Evans reached 20 points for the third time this season, extending his double-figure scoring streak to seven games. Gray reached double digits for the first time in a game since mid-December. Smith added 19 points and seven rebounds.

Despite trailing by 14 early in the first half, the Horned Frogs were able to pull within three with 20.1 seconds left in the second half. TCU held the advantage in rebounds 21-27, but was unable to recover. Brodziansky contributed 22 points and teammate Kenrich Williams added 16 to the total.

 

Saturday Matchups

Oklahoma vs Iowa State

A strong second-half performance from Oklahoma’s Jordan Woodard left the Sooners shy of a second straight conference upset Saturday. The senior guard was virtually silent in the first half but scored 18 points in the second half. Iowa State outlasted OU in double overtime, 92-87.

The Sooners’ shooting performance in the first half was exceptionally poor (31.3 percent). OU (8-10 overall, 2-5 Big 12) managed to gain and lose a 19-point lead when the Cyclones went on a 21-1 run, losing the lead before the break.

Iowa State (12-6, 4-3) saw a career day from senior guard Deonte Burton. Burton led all five Cyclones with 31 points. Nazareth Mitrou-Long had a record day and joined ISU’s 1,000-career point club with 20 points.

 

Kansas vs Texas

One year ago, Texas freshman Jarrett Allen was at Allen Fieldhouse as a Jayhawk recruit. On Saturday, he led his Longhorns to Lawrence and had a career day in the process. It wasn’t enough for UT (7-12, 1-6 Big 12) to upend KU at home.

Kansas (18-1, 7-0 Big 12) extended a 50-game home win streak 79-67 over UT. The home crowd saw a player who will assuredly be a standout for Shaka Smart’s squad. Allen had a career-high 22 points and 19 rebounds in the Texas loss. He fell one rebound shy of becoming the fifth Longhorn in school history to record at least 20 points and 20 rebounds and the first since Kevin Durant’s 2007 performance in Lubbock.

Fourteen steals marked a season-high for the Jayhawks. They never trailed as Devonte’ Graham recorded 18 points and National Player of the Year candidate Frank Mason added 17. Mason is now among the top 20 all-time scorers at KU. Big man Landen Lucas contributed 14 rebounds.

 

Kansas State vs West Virginia

Kansas State overcame a 12-point first half deficit with all five starters scoring in double figures at Bramlage Coliseum on Saturday. The Wildcats handed West Virginia its second loss in as many games, 79-75.

WVU (15-4, 4-3), typically known for ball pressure and forced turnovers, fell victim to its own strategy and turned the ball over a season-high 23 times. Barry Brown and Kamau Stokes led the way for K-State (15-4, 4-3) with 15 points apiece. It marked the Wildcats’ first back-to-back conference wins in two seasons and ended a five-game losing streak to WVU.

K-State scored 14 of the first 20 points in the second half. Wesley Iwundu became the first Wildcat in program history with 1,000 points, 500 rebounds, 300 assists and 100 steals during that stretch. The Mountaineers didn’t go away and reclaimed the lead with five minutes to go in the game. A Brown free throw sealed the victory with seconds remaining.

 

TCU vs Baylor

In front of a sellout crowd at Schollmaier Arena, the Baylor Bears had to claw out a nine-point victory at TCU.

TCU (14-5, 3-4) traded leads throughout the second half with No. 6 Baylor. There were five ties and 13 lead changes in the second half, which could be deemed a typical Big 12 game. Vladimir Brodziansky recorded a double-double with 19 points and 10 rebounds, but it wasn’t enough as the Horned Frogs fell 62-53.

The Bears (18-1, 6-1) have rattled off three wins since dropping a conference matchup against WVU. Baylor was atop the AP rankings when the upset occurred. Manu Lecomte led the way for Baylor with 17 points. Johnathan Motley and Jo Lual-Acuil had 15 and 11, respectively. Scott Drew had high praise for the leadership of his upperclassmen and credited them for staying collected in close finishes.

ozone@ocolly.com

 

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