After being blown out by the TCU Horned Frogs in their first matchup of last season, the West Virginia men’s basketball team was out for revenge.
The Mountaineers, who entered Tuesday ranked first in the Big 12 in field goal percentage defense, held the TCU offense to a field goal percentage of 31.8% — a big factor in WVU’s 82-49 victory over the Horned Frogs.
Despite guards Desmond Bane and R.J. Nembhard scoring double-digit points, TCU (12-4, 3-1 Big 12) had its worst shooting performance of the season.
“It started on defense,” West Virginia guard Brandon Knapper said. “They (TCU) couldn’t get into their offense. We picked up the momentum on the defensive side and translated that to the offensive side.”
West Virginia (14-2, 3-1) fared much better scoring-wise, shooting a season-high 30-of-52 (58%) from the field. Derek Culver led the way for the Mountaineers, ending the night with 17 points and 11 rebounds — his fourth double-double performance of the season.
Seven of Culver’s points came in the first half, helping West Virginia hold a 37-23 advantage at halftime. He was aided by Chase Harler and Sean McNeil, who combined for 15 first half points.
The offensive success continued into the second half as the Mountaineers exploded for 44 points, routing the Horned Frogs by 32 points — WVU’s third largest margin of victory over a Big 12 Conference foe in program history.
“It seems at times when we’re playing good defense, we’re not scoring,” Harler said. “I think tonight we were playing really good defense and we were scoring. Everyone stepped up.”
West Virginia will look to extend their winning streak on Saturday as they take on the Kansas State Wildcats. Tip off from Bramlage Coliseum in Manhattan will come at 2 p.m. The game will be broadcast on ESPNU.