MORGANTOWN — Four Mountaineers reached double figures, as the No. 24/21-ranked West Virginia women’s basketball team cruised to an 83-43 victory over Coppin State on Saturday afternoon inside the WVU Coliseum.
West Virginia (6-1) used a series of runs to take commanding lead and clinch its second 40-point win of the season. Saturday’s win gave the Mountaineers their 13th straight win inside the Coliseum, which remains the fourth longest in program history.
Junior Bria Holmes led all scorers with 20 points, pulling in seven rebounds, collecting five steals and handing out four assists.
Forwards Averee Fields and Lanay Montgomery both recorded double-doubles, becoming the first duo since Christal Caldwell and Ayana Dunning to achieve that feat in 2011. Fields poured in 15 points and 10 rebounds for her second double-dip of the year. Montgomery netted her first career double-double with 12 rebounds and 10 points, while tying a career-best with five blocks.
Freshman Teana Muldrow rounded out the WVU double-digit scorers with 10 points. Making her 100th career start on Saturday, senior Linda Stepney scored eight points, dished out seven assists and grabbed six rebounds in the win.
“I thought we got any shot we wanted,” said coach Mike Carey. “We weren’t shooting well, but I thought Linda Stepney played extremely hard. I thought Lanay Montgomery played extremely hard. I thought Bria Holmes played hard. I thought Averee (Fields) played hard and I thought that Crystal Leary played hard. The problem is that I need to find about two or three more that play hard. I can’t take the effort, so we have to find a couple more people who will put out the effort.”
For the second straight game, WVU shot 50 percent or higher from the field, going an even 32-of-64 (50%). Coppin State was held to 26.2 percent shooting (16-of-61), while committing 19 turnovers that resulted in 22 Mountaineer points. The inside game was dominated by West Virginia outrebounding CSU, 58-to-38. WVU notched a season-high 54 points in the paint.
The Mountaineers pounced on the Eagles early with an 18-6 run in the first nine minutes of action. West Virginia’s tough defense kept the Eagles struggling offense, as Coppin State went 2-of-11 during one stretch.
WVU held a 41-16 lead at the break – their largest halftime lead of the year. Fields and Holmes both eclipsed double figures in the first half scoring 12 and 10, respectively. CSU was led by Bria Harris with six points. In the first half, West Virginia shot 41 percent (16-of-39) from the field, while limiting Coppin State to 25 percent (7-of-28).
The second half again started strong for West Virginia the Mountaineers opened on a 12-5 run to take a 53-21 lead. At one point, WVU went 9-of-9 from the field to take command of the game.
Later in the contest, Montgomery reeled in her 10th rebound to record her first career double-double. West Virginia had a 21-3 run for an eight minute stretch as the team cruised to a fourth consecutive win.
Coppin State’s Tanaysa Henderson (13) and Harris (10) finished as the Eagles’ scoring leaders.
West Virginia continues its homestand with a 7 p.m. contest against Duquesne on Wednesday, Dec. 10. The game is televised regionally on ROOT SPORTS. Wednesday’s contest is also $1 day brought to you by United Bank.
NOTES: Linda Stepney made her 100th career start on Saturday … West Virginia’s 25-point lead at halftime was the largest for the Mountaineers at the break this season … Bria Holmes has reached double-figures for the 11th consecutive game … West Virginia has reached double figures in steals the past three games including 16 on Saturday … Lanay Montgomery records her first career double-double with 10 points and 12 rebounds … Her five blocks matched a career-high against Fairleigh Dickinson on Wednesday … WVU has won 13 straight at home dating back to last season – that streak is fourth longest in program history.