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Mountaineer Morning Links: Friday (4/3/14) Edition

WNIT previews, baseball drops opener to K State, football reports, Jozwiak golf tournament, Big 12 roundup & more.


Welcome, By-Godders, to the Shotgun/Throwdown, WVU's best place for sports links, information, sophomoric humor and daily distractions. We're being brought to you today by Bad Bunny Imperial Cream Ale.

What You May Have Missed:

Women's Soccer to Face Pitt at DDSS - WVU Athletics
The West Virginia University women’s soccer team opens its 2015 spring home season slate against Pitt on Friday, April 3, at 7 p.m., at Dick Dlesk Soccer Stadium.

Gym Blog: Mission Accomplished - WVU Athletics
The squad earned its 36th regional bid, 31st in NCAA competition, thanks in large part to a program-best second place, 195.025 showing at the Big 12 Gymnastics Championship on March 21.

Highlands grad Gillette beaming heading into regionals for West Virginia - Pittsburgh Tribune Review
"Whenever you're up there, you know the whole team is behind you," Gillette said. "We're all competing for a common goal. We're not out there for ourselves."

Student-Athletes Speak Out - WVU Athletics
Five West Virginia University student-athletes spoke their minds as they presented motivational speeches on Thursday afternoon.

WVU's Top Seniors Honored - WVU Athletics
Eight students from a variety of backgrounds have been honored with the Order of Augusta, West Virginia University’s most prestigious student honor. They are among 45 students who have been named WVU Foundation’s Outstanding Seniors.


Mountaineer Women Are Still Playing - WVU Athletics
WVU women still playing games in April.

WVU women survive bumpy road to Saturday’s WNIT title game - Charleston Daily Mail
The Mountaineers were once 15-11 after an 11-day rut that saw three losses in four games and the head coach publicly condemn his team.

West Virginia’s in it to win it Mountaineers pulled together in time for long WNIT run to finals - Charleston Gazette
Call it better late than never. Whether it is that renewed commitment or something else, West Virginia has gotten as far as it can go.

Challenge from coach helped WVU women turn season, get to WNIT final - Pittsburgh Tribune Review
Following the West Virginia women's loss to Oklahoma State in mid-February, Mountaineers coach Mike Carey said it was a performance that set the game back 15 years, and that was not his only criticism.

Carey's challenge to team pays off - Exponent Telegram
He couldn’t take it any longer. Not the losses. Coaches learn there are going to be losses, sometimes far more than you expect, but it wasn’t that they lost, it was how.

WVU, UCLA Learn Lessons On Finals Trip - BGN
Teams that gain a foothold in the Postseason WNIT understand the ripple effects of each tournament victory, where extra games can help speed the maturation of a young roster or help a program figure out what didn’t quite fall together right and how to better set the table for next season.

FURFARI: Can amazing WVU team capture first-ever WNIT championship? - Times West Virginian
Those absolutely amazing West Virginia University women’s basketball players did it again on Wednesday night at the Coliseum.

News of Note:

WVU Spring Football Outlook: Quarterbacks - BGN
Quarterback battles are always the marquee items to watch on any football team, and West Virginia's spring competition approaches the Royal Rumble level with no fewer than five signal callers listed on the depth chart.

Veteran Secondary to Give WVU a Defensive Edge - WVillustrated
The West Virginia secondary enters spring practice as the most seasoned position on the depth chart, featuring nine returners with playing experience from last year.

Gold & Blue Now: Thursday, April 2 - WV MetroNews
Dana Holgorsen discusses how spring football is coming along. We also catch up with Steven Lassen of Atholon Sports, as he forecasts how the Mountaineers may fair in the Big 12 this season.

Kevin White will attend the draft - ProFootballTalk
White told PFT this week that he’ll be backstage at the draft when his name is called.


Baseball Drops Series Opener at K-State - WVU Athletics
The West Virginia University baseball team fell 8-2 at Kansas State on Thursday night in the series opener at Tointon Family Stadium.

K-State Pitching Stifles WVU - BGN
For much of the year, West Virginia has gotten good hitting and solid pitching as it forged a better than expected start to the 2015 season. In its return to Big 12 action, neither of those were evident as the Mountaineers dropped an 8-2 decision to Kansas State.

Mountaineers held in check during 8-2 loss at K-State - WV MetroNews
West Virginia's seven-game win streak was snapped as it fell to 2-5 in Big 12 action.

Ping forward - WVU Sports with Mike Casazza
A few things about the park. That’s a turf infield, and WVU likes the idea. The ball plays truer on the turf. It’s not slowed by grass or accelerated by dirt. Bad hops vanish. Fielding should be easier.


"It's Grind Time" and Devin Williams is Leading the Way - EerSports
Staten sees a big man stepping up to take over – Devin Williams.

Pro News:

Brian Jozwiak Celebrity Golf Classic Preps for 25th Anniversary - WVillustrated
The 25th Anniversary of the Brian Jozwiak Celebrity Golf Classic will be held on Friday, June 19th from Lakeview Resort in Morgantown.

Around the League (and Beyond):

Baylor's Kendal Briles forging own path at his dad's side - Big 12 Blog - ESPN

Hoiball’s Kryptonite - Wide Right & Natty Lite

Spring practices hint at the changes to come in Kansas football - Rock Chalk Talk

Kansas State Wildcats 2015 Spring Football Preview -

Oklahoma Sooners MBB | Frank Booker Decides To Transfer - Crimson And Cream Machine

Oklahoma State football: Wide receiver Brandon Sheperd has mean mentality this offseason - Oklahoman

Texas hires Shaka Smart as head coach, per report -

Men's basketball defense anchored by shot blocking - TCU 360

Point/Counterpoint: Texas Tech's Tough 2014 Season - Viva The Matadors

What's On Tap:

Open Football Practice at Shepherd University - WVU Athletics
The West Virginia University football team will hold its first off-campus open practice this spring at Ram Stadium in Shepherdstown, W.Va., on Saturday, April 4, starting at 1 p.m.

UCLA Bruins vs. West Virginia Mountaineers - ESPN
NCAA Women's NIT Championship game, 3 pm Saturday from the CCC on CBS Sports Network

WNIT Championship Ticket Information - WVU Athletics
Adult tickets are $7 each and can be purchased in person at the Charleston Civic Center Box Office, through Ticketmaster at 1-800-745-3000 or online at

Video of Interest:

The women's basketball team is prepped for the season's final act on Saturday at 3 p.m. on CBS Sports Network against UCLA.

Video of (Dis)Interest:

Miss Throwdown:

Today's Miss Throwdown is a Latvian beauty. CLICK HERE for today's gallery of Julia Lescova.