The Times West Virginian

WVU Sports

November 12, 2011

WVU holds off ORU, 78-71

MORGANTOWN — West Virginia University fought tooth and nail to put visiting Oral Roberts away Friday at the Coliseum.

The Mountaineers defeated the Golden Eagles, 78-71, but the result was in doubt until the very end.

Warren Niles hit a 3-pointer in front of the ORU bench to cut the West Virginia lead to just one at 72-71 with a little more than two minutes to play, and the more than 8,000 fans in the Coliseum collectively held their breath. The Golden Eagles had trailed by as many as 12 several different times in the game and fought back to keep things interesting.

Trailing 74-71, Oral Roberts failed to score on two possessions in the final minute before a Kevin Jones rebound and Darryl “Truck” Bryant foul shots put West Virginia up five with less than 30 seconds to play.

ORU had its chances in the final half minute, but could not make anything happen against West Virginia’s 1-3-1 defense. More Bryant foul shots closed the game for WVU.

“We survived,” West Virginia head coach Bob Huggins said.

WVU started two freshmen, Keaton Miles and Jabarie Hinds, along with returning players Kevin Jones, Deniz Kilicli and Bryant. Miles and Bryant both got in foul trouble in the first half, forcing Huggins to go digging into his bench full of first-year Mountaineers.

Huggins said he saw both good and bad from the freshmen in their West Virginia debuts.

“They played like freshmen,” he said. “They played really well at times, really hard at times. Then they took plays off and were not very assertive. They forgot their assignments. We played 1-3 with a chaser, which I have never seen before, instead of a 1-3-1.”

One of those freshman, Hinds, said he felt a few butterflies running out on the carpet in his first game for West Virginia.

“I was a little nervous in the beginning,” Hinds said. “After a few minutes I was cool though.”

Hinds finished with nine points and five assists. Jones was the leading scorer for WVU, finishing with 20 to go with eight rebounds. In all, four Mountaineers scored in double figures including Jones. Kilicli had 11, Bryant 17 and freshman Aaron Brown contributed 10. Fellow freshman Gary Browne almost joined that group, scoring nine to go with a team-high six assists.

Bryant spent most of the first half on the bench, picking up three fouls in the opening half. That left much of the guard duty up to inexperienced players.

“I know we didn’t play well tonight, but I liked the energy we had,” Bryant said. “We don’t know how to put anybody away yet. That’s something that comes with time with a lot of freshmen. I blame a lot of it on myself. I did a poor job tonight getting myself in foul trouble and leaving them out there.”

Jones said Oral Roberts’ press in the second half caused the Mountaineers some problems, especially with all of the youth on the floor for WVU.

“Their press wasn’t the most aggressive press, but it sped us up a little bit, and the freshmen made some key mistakes,” Jones said. “It’s youth — youthful mistakes we’re going to have to go over and learn from. I’d rather learn from a win than a loss any day.”

The Mountaineers return to the Coliseum on Tuesday for an unusual 10 a.m. start against Kent State as part of ESPN’s 24-hour televised basketball marathon. When asked about the early game, Huggins replied that there were many things WVU had not done as a basketball team.

“We haven’t played on a boat yet,” Huggins said.

Mountaineer fans got a brief scare in the second half when Jones went down hard on the floor after running in to an Oral Roberts player. Jones said he went knee-to-knee with someone and it caused him a brief moment of pain.

“My knee gave out for just a little second,” Jones said. “But I’m fine, there’s no need to worry.”

Email Tom Bragg at tbragg@timeswv.com.

1
Text Only
WVU Sports
  • Charges against Smallwood dropped

    West Virginia University running back Wendell Smallwood took to Twitter mid-afternoon Tuesday to express his feelings after charges of witness intimidation against him were dropped by the state of Delaware.

    July 29, 2014

  • Were Bowlsby’s fears about college athletics’ future justified?

    I have never met or even talked to Bob Bowlsby, commissioner of the Big 12 Conference.
    But I did read a lengthy story on his 45-minute address to reporters last week on Media Day in Dallas, Texas. Among other things, Bowlsby forecast a startling change threatening the existence of intercollegiate athletics as we have known for these many, many years.

    July 28, 2014

  • HERTZEL COLUMN: Big 12 provides plenty of optimism

    This past week the Big 12 held its annual media gathering in Dallas and served up a heaping portion of optimism for the 2014 season that is now upon us, West Virginia University opening its preseason practices on Thursday.
    This is a time of year when no one has lost a game, not even Charlie Weis at Kansas, and it’s a time of year when opinions are more plentiful than tattoos in an NFL locker room.

    July 27, 2014

  • Seider's brother commits to WVU

    West Virginia University’s football team has received a commitment from one of its own.

    July 26, 2014

  • HERTZEL COLUMN: Big 12 provides much optimism heading into 2014 season

    This past week the Big 12 held its annual media gathering in Dallas and served up a heaping portion of optimism for the 2014 season that is now upon us, West Virginia University opening its preseason practices on Thursday.

    July 26, 2014

  • HERTZEL COLUMN: WVU needs White to follow in former receivers’ footsteps

    A year ago Clint Trickett took a lot of grief as the once potent West Virginia offense came unraveled, but there is more that than meets the eye.
    The criticism was not unfounded, of course, although behind each incomplete pass there was the pain Trickett was suffering through to throw it, his rotator cuff in need of surgery.

    July 26, 2014

  • Forsey posts Top 10 finish at World Championships

    Freshman Jillian Forsey of the West Virginia University cross country team finished ninth at the 2014 IAAF World Junior Track and Field Championships in Eugene, Oregon.
    Forsey, a native of Stephenville, Newfoundland and Labrador, was representing Team Canada. She was the first Canadian to cross the finish line in the women’s 5,000-meter run, finishing in ninth place overall in 16:02.55.

    July 26, 2014

  • FURFARI COLUMN: Wyant talks about ‘Pappy’ Lewis and other items of interest

    I saved some other interesting observations from the recent interview with Fred Wyant which you may find worth reading.
    He believes a college football coach ought to recruit a quarterback he wants, give him some help, then turn virtually everything over to him and let him go.

    July 26, 2014

  • Forsey posts Top 10 finish at World Championships

    Freshman Jillian Forsey of the West Virginia University cross country team finished ninth at the 2014 IAAF World Junior Track and Field Championships in Eugene, Oregon.

    July 25, 2014

  • FURFARI COLUMN: Wyant talks about ‘Pappy’ Lewis and other items of interest

    I saved some other interesting observations from the recent interview with Fred Wyant which you may find worth reading.

    July 25, 2014

Featured Ads
WVU Sports Highlights
NDN Sports
House Ads
NCAA Breaking News
NCAA Photos