The West Virginia men’s basketball team welcomes the Boston University Terriers to the WVU Coliseum on Friday in the second game of the Cancun Challenge.
The Mountaineers (3-0) are coming off a 69-61 victory over the Northern Colorado Bears that saw WVU’s 17-point first half lead vanish before the team pulled away late in the contest.
Senior Jermaine Haley has been a steady influence for the team, leading in points with an average of 12.7 per game. The six-foot-seven-inch guard is also second on the team in rebounding with 8.7 boards per game, trailing only standout freshman Oscar Tshiebwe, who averages just under 10.
Sophomore Emmitt Matthews Jr. came on late down the stretch last season and has picked up right where he left off to start this season. He is averaging 12 points and six rebounds per game on the season while leading the team in minutes with 30 per game.
Matthews has continued to improve on his outside shot, hitting at a sizzling 58 percent from three-point range this season. At 7-of-12 from three, he has four more threes than any other Mountaineer and is second on the team in three-point percentage, trailing only junior college transfer Sean McNeil, who is 3-of-5 this season for 60%.
Against Northern Colorado, sophomore Derek Culver didn’t see the floor until the second half, which was a coach’s decision, according to West Virginia head coach Bob Huggins. In limited time, Culver took advantage of his minutes and turned in 13 points and five rebounds.
Culver has also improved mightily from the free throw line this season, shooting 17-of-19 for almost 90%.
Boston University (3-2) rolls into Morgantown coming off an upset on the road against the University of South Carolina, handing them their first loss of the season.
This was the first time the Terriers won against a Power 5 school since the 2013-14 season when they defeated the Maryland Terrapins, and their first ever win against an SEC school.
They are led by talented sophomore Walter Whyte, who averages 16.4 points and 6.2 rebounds per game. He is also the Terriers best three-point shooter at 39%.
Boston also gets contributions from junior Javante McCoy and senior Max Mahoney, who both average 11.2 points per game.
Standing at six-feet-eight-inches, Mahoney leads the team in rebounds at seven per game.
The game is set to tip at 7 p.m. and will be the last contest before the Mountaineers travel to Mexico to play in two more games to complete the Cancun Challenge.