Football typically overshadows all other sports during Thanksgiving Week but West Virginia women’s basketball started their 2020-21 season with a bang. Head coach Mike Carey secured his 700th career win as his team picked up two wins in the South Point Thanksgiving Shootout in Las Vegas.
Carey has been at WVU since 2001, previously coaching at his alma mater Salem International for 13 seasons. He has 412 total wins at WVU as he begins his 20th season.
The Mountaineers (2-0) feasted on Fresno State on Thanksgiving Day, winning 83-62. Four Mountaineers reached double digits the season opener, including 23 from redshirt senior guard Kysre Gondrezick.
Carey’s favorite Thanksgiving dish was likely his team’s 54 rebounds, outshining Fresno State’s 24. WVU capitalized with 24 second-chance points and 38 points in the paint. That said, those numbers may have been a bit of spackle over the 15 turnovers the Mountaineers committed.
WVU shot 50 percent from behind the arc in the game, draining 10 total three-point field goals.
In the second game at South Point Arena, WVU picked up a 62-42 win over the SEC’s LSU. Though the Tigers are 0-2 after the season-opening showcase, WVU needs as many marquee wins as it can gather before heading into Big 12 play.
Again, Gondrezick led the way for the Mountaineers. She drained 22 points in the low-scoring game. Kristen Deans also reached double digits for the second game in a row.
WVU out-rebounded LSU 31-26 but did turn over the ball 16 times, a trend Carey will want his team to clean up as the season progresses.
The Mountaineers shot nearly 43 percent from the field throughout the tournament and totaled 60 points in the paint during the two games.
WVU faces an important week ahead at WVU Coliseum. On Thursday, Dec. 3, North Alabama comes to Morgantown. Then, on Sunday, Dec. 6, WVU welcomes storied Tennessee to the Coliseum for a showdown in the Big 12/SEC Challenge.