The West Virginia Mountaineers are 5-1 and have the No. 6 ranked Virginia Cavaliers squarely in their sight after dominating the Manhattan Jaspers, 108-61, to finish out the NIT Season Tip-Off.
The Mountaineers jumped out to a quick 8-0 lead, and never took their foot off the pedal after that. West Virginia would go on to score 60 points in the first half, marking the 55th time a Mountaineer team has scored 60 or more points in a half. It is also the first time since 1996 that West Virginia has scored 60 or more points in any half, and the first time ever that it has been done in two first halves in the same season.
Esa Ahmad continued his breakout season, shooting a perfect 100% from the field, and tying his career high of 19 points that he set on Friday in the loss to Temple. Nathan Adrian approached a triple-double, but fell just short, finishing with 15 points, seven rebounds and five assists. Daxter Miles and James Long finished with 11 and 10 points, respectively, giving the Mountaineers four players to finish in double digits.
West Virginia, who came into this game averaging 27 forced turnovers per game, forced a record setting 40 Manhattan turnovers. The Jaspers came into this game averaging 23 turnovers per game.
West Virginia has the rest of the week to prepare for their first big game of the season, as they travel to Charlottesville, VA to take on the University of Virginia Cavaliers on Saturday at 2:00PM on ESPNU.