The West Virginia women’s basketball team will seek its eighth consecutive victory against Texas Tech today 7 p.m. in the WVU Coliseum.
WVU is now 24-3 overall and 13-2 inside the Big 12. West Virginia defeated the Lady Red Raiders on their home court Jan. 22, 70-51.
The Mountaineers moved up two spots to No. 11 in the AP poll after a 61-40 win over Kansas State in Manhattan, Kansas, Sunday. In that game senior guard Christal Caldwell used 14 points in the opening half to spark her team early. Senior center Asya Bussie also chipped in 10 points and grabbed six boards. Caldwell finished her night with 21 points.
Sunday’s matchup marked the fifth opponent of the last six West Virginia held to 62 points or fewer. The Mountaineers are currently No. 4 in the Big 12 Conference in field goal percentage defense and No. 2 in scoring margin.
“This team for the most part has been pretty focused,” said WVU head coach Mike Carey. “(Texas Tech) is an important game. Our girls understand that.”
TTU is currently 6-20 overall and are struggling in the Big 12 at 0-15.
The Lady Red Raiders will have to find a way to get junior guard Amber Battle involved if they want to get their first conference win. Battle leads her team with 17.2 points per game and is also a force in the paint with 7.8 boards per game. She is No. 2 in the conference in defensive boards per game (5.9) and No. 3 in scoring.
“Battle is as good as anyone in the league,” Carey said. “She’s a big-time athlete. You have to pay attention to her.”
Texas Tech nearly had its first conference win Saturday against No. 12 Oklahoma State. With only 1.5 seconds left OSU’s Tiffany Bias went the length of the court and sunk a game-winning layup with only 1.5 seconds left. In the loss Battle recorded a double-double with 19 points and 10 boards, while Ivonne Cook-Taylor added 14 points.
The Mountaineer Maniacs are offering free beanies for the first 400 Maniacs inside the Coliseum.