After West Virginia’s seniors got the Mountaineers off to a solid 11-6 start, the game settled into a back-and-forth first-half that saw seven ties and ten lead changes, despite WVU enduring a nearly five minute field goal drought. Behind Daxter Miles’s game-high 23 point, 7 rebound effort, the Mountaineers (24-7, 12-6) took control in the second half and locked up the 2-seed in the Big XII conference.
Iowa State (20-10, 12-6) came into the game as one of the hottest teams in the country, but could not over come a 48-29 rebounding margin that allowed the Mountaineers to out score the Cyclones 23-8 on second chance points.
In addition to Miles, senior Nate Adrian closed out his incredible career going 7-13 from the field for 16 points and 7 rebounds. Jevon Carter added another 13 points, and senior Tarik Phillip contributed to the Senior Night victory with 7 points, 8 board and 10 assists as well.
For the Cyclones, Naz Long led the way with 22 points — 18 from 6-11 3-point shooting, but the lack of depth — only five Cyclones scored — and an inability to stop WVU inside the arc, where the Cyclones only manged 12 points to WVU’s 40 proved too much.
The Mountaineers finish the season riding high, winning five of their last six games despite missing second-leading scorer Esa Ahmad for much of that stretch. Ahmad, who did not start, looked shaky at times in his first action in over a week, but chipped in 5 points in just 11 minutes of action.
Having swept the Cyclones and split with the Baylor Bears, WVU will be the 2-seed in the Big XII tournament and will likely face the winner of TCU-Oklahoma. The Cyclones will have to wait until tomorrow when Texas and Baylor square off to know their seeding.
Stat of the Game: Nate Adrian’s Hair is the Statistically the Most Luxurious in the NCAA