Tuesday's college basketball: No. 14 West Virginia sweeps No. 7 Texas Tech with 82-71 win
Lubbock, Texas — Sean McNeil drew the start when a groin injury sidelined Taz Sherman, who was coming off a career high in scoring, and the West Virginia guard hit his first shot 15 seconds into the game.
The junior kept it going from there.
McNeil scored a career-high 26 points and the No. 14 Mountaineers finished a regular-season sweep of seventh-ranked Texas Tech with an 82-71 victory over the Red Raiders on Tuesday night.
West Virginia (14-5, 7-3 Big 12) won its third consecutive game and ended a four-game skid in Lubbock 15 days after a thrilling 88-87 win at home over Texas Tech when Miles McBride hit the go-ahead jumper in the final seconds.
“Big thing is seeing the first shot go in,” McNeil said. “I was just excited to play. We knew this was a big game for us, on the road, especially after the game we had with them back at our place. We really wanted to come here and get this one.”
McNeil was 8 of 11 overall and 5 of 7 from 3-point range, including one with the shot clock about to expire late in the second half.
McBride scored 18 of his 20 points in the second half coming off a career-best 31 points in a win over Kansas that helped knock the Jayhawks out of the AP Top 25 for the first time in 12 years.
Mac McClung scored 17 points before fouling out for the Red Raiders (14-6, 6-5), who saw a three-game winning streak end a day after reaching their highest ranking of the season.
Derek Culver sat most of the second half with four fouls, but converted a three-point play to help West Virginia stay in front and finished with 15 points and eight rebounds.
McClung fouled out after getting whistled twice in a span of 17 seconds in the final two minutes.
The first foul came before the ball was thrown in on a West Virginia inbound play with 2 seconds on the shot clock. McClung was called for holding Jalen Bridges, who made both free throws for a 73-69 lead with 1:20 remaining.
After missing the rim on a driving layup, McClung was called for his fifth foul when he hit McBride, who made both shots as West Virginia scored its final 12 points at the line and finished 29 of 39 on free throws.
“I thought it was a classic example of the team that made the more mistakes lost the game,” Texas Tech coach Chris Beard said. “That was us. Untimely, costly mistakes throughout the game.”
After rallying from 12 points down in the final seven minutes of the first meeting at home, the Mountaineers had to protect a second-half lead on the road.
West Virginia took its biggest lead at nine early in the second half on a 3-pointer from McNeil, but Texas Tech scored six quick points to get within two and keep the game close before the Mountaineers pulled away late.
“You think about the combination we had out there, and they fought their way through it,” coach Bob Huggins said. “I’m as pleased as I can be with how we played.”
More Top 25
►No. 11 Alabama 81, (at) South Carolina 78: John Petty Jr. scored 20 points and Alabama held off South Carolina to bounce back from its first Southeastern Conference loss of the season.
The Crimson Tide (16-5, 11-1 SEC) were off to their best league start in 65 years before falling to 10th-ranked Missouri this past Saturday.
Justin Minaya cut South Carolina’s deficit to 79-78 with 2 seconds left, but James Rojas was quickly fouled and made both free throws to seal the victory.
AJ Lawson led the Gamecocks (5-8, 3-6) with 21 points, making five 3-pointers.
►No. 13 Texas 80, (at) Kansas State 77: Andrew Jones scored 24 points and Texas held off Kansas State.
Greg Brown added 17 points and Courtney Ramey had 14 for the Longhorns (12-5, 6-4 Big 12), who snapped a three-game skid.
Mike McGuirl missed a 3-point attempt from half court in the waning seconds for the Wildcats (5-16, 1-11), who have lost 11 straight.
Nijel Pack scored 22 points and McGuirl had 18 for the Wildcats.
►No. 19 Creighton 63, (at) Georgetown 48: Christian Bishop scored 17 points and Creighton capitalized on Georgetown’s worst shooting performance in a decade.
Creighton (15-5, 11-4 Big East) avenged an 86-79 home loss to the Hoyas last Wednesday and won for the fifth time in six games.
Georgetown shot 27.6%, its worst mark since making 25% of its field goals in a loss to Cincinnati on Feb. 23, 2011.
Ballock had 14 points and had four of the Bluejays’ six 3-pointers.
Jamorko Pickett led the Hoyas (5-10, 3-7) with 16 points and 12 rebounds