Iowa State was able to keep West Virginia from "doing what they do," taking care of the basketball and getting easy buckets on their way to a 79-59 victory over the Mountaineers on Saturday in Ames.
West Virginia started the game with five turnovers in the first five minutes of action and fell behind 7-4. Iowa State would keep a similar lead for a while until at the 6:50 mark, with West Virginia down 19-15, Juwan Staten and Gary Browne hit back-to-back threes to take a 21-19 lead. Sandwiched in between those jumpers was a very nice block by Devin Williams on a Jameel McKay transition layup attempt.
With 3:18 to go in the half and WVU holding a 26-25 lead after another Gary Browne three, Devin Williams left the game after appearing to re-injure his already-taped right hand. The Cyclones took advantage of his absence and went into the break holding a 36-32 lead.
Williams was back in the lineup to begin the second half, but appeared to still be in pain. It didn't matter much, though, because Iowa State came out on fire. The Cyclones began the second half on a 14-2 run, aided by two threes from Monte Morris, and built the lead to 50-34 with thirteen minutes to go. The Mountaineers wouldn't get any closer than 9 points the rest of the way, and Iowa State poured it on in the final minutes for the 20 point victory.
Bob Huggins gave Chase Conner the opportunity to spark the offense in the second half, and he responded by sinking his first 3 three pointers.
Juwan Staten was the only Mountaineer in double figures today, scoring 16 points with 7 assists and 3 steals. Chase Conner scored 9 on 3-6 from three point range. Gary Browne scored 8, all in the first half.
Monte Morris led Iowa State with 19 points, 5 assists, and 3 steals. Abdel Nader had another nice game against West Virginia, scoring 16 off the bench. Jameel McKay was trouble for the Mountaineers all day. He finished with 12 points, 8 rebounds, and 5 blocks.
West Virginia forced only 16 turnovers, which isn't nearly enough for this team to beat a quality opponent on the road. They shot only 37.9% and allowed Iowa State to shoot 56.5%.
West Virginia has now lost 3 out of their last 4, with their only victory coming against a Kansas State team without Marcus Foster.
Things don't get any easier. Up next is a Big Monday showdown with #8 Kansas in Morgantown. West Virginia upset the Jayhawks last season despite an unreal effort from #1 overall pick Andrew Wiggins. KU is 10-2 in the Big 12 and 21-4 overall. The game tips at 9:00PM and will be televised by ESPN and streamed on the WatchESPN app.