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Mountaineers Struggle in Fayetteville, Lose to Razorbacks, 77-68

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NCAA Basketball: West Virginia at Arkansas Nelson Chenault-USA TODAY Sports

Saying the West Virginia Mountaineers have hit a rough strath would be a great understatement. For the second game in a row, the contest felt like it fell into the “must win” category. For the second game in a row, the Mountaineers found themselves adding to the loss column.

The Arkansas Razorbacks raced out to a 16-5 lead with just under 16 minutes to go in the half.

For much of the first half West Virginia was able to keep the deficit under 10, going into the half down 9 on a Malik Curry layup with four second to go in the stanza.

West Virginia came out flat in the second half, finding themselves down 19 points with 16:06 to go in the game.

Surprisingly, West Virginia back to life and roared back with strong defense and chaotic offense. The Mountaineers cut the lead to 5, 54-49 with 12;24 to go in the game.

Another four minute scoring drought would willingly hand the momentum back to Arkansas.

The most shocking moment of the game came when Razorback Trey Wade went over the back of Gabe Osabuohien and Osabuohien was called for his fifth foul.

Kedrian Johnson led the Mountaineers with 18 points. Taz Sherman added 15 and Curry had 11.

The stat that tells the story of the game was Jalen Bridges’ six rebound. He led the Mountaineers who were out-rebounded by 18 rebounds on the afternoon. Several times during the game the ratio of Razorbacks to Mountaineers in the defensive paint was 3;1.

Bob Huggins comments about their lackluster performance in the transfer portal have put scrutiny on those he has brought in. Transfer numbers for the game were Pauly Paulicap 6 minutes, one turnover, four fouls; Dimon Carrigan 22 minutes, three rebounds, three blocks, four fouls; Malik Curry 11 points, 3 rebounds a turnover and two fouls in 17 minutes.

West Virginia returns to action Monday at Baylor.