Emmitt Matthews Jr. scored 18 points and West Virginia rode its stifling defense to defeat visiting No. 4 Baylor 76-64 on Saturday afternoon in the Big 12 Conference regular-season closer for both teams in Morgantown, W.Va.
The Mountaineers led by two points after a low-scoring first half and 49-42 with 5:02 to play after a 12-0 run over a six-minute period. Baylor went 0 for 8 from the field during that stretch and went almost nine minutes without a basket before a 3-pointer from Jared Butler with 2:37 to play.
West Virginia (21-10, 9-9) outshot Baylor 57.7 percent to 46.9 percent in the second half and outrebounded the Bears 23-12 after halftime. The Mountaineers made their final seven shots from the floor.
Oscar Tshiebwe added 16 points and 12 rebounds for the Mountaineers while Miles McBride scored 12 and Sean McNeil hit for 11 points for West Virginia.
Butler led all scorers with 21 points, with Davion Mitchell adding 15 points and Mark Vital grabbing 12 rebounds for the Bears.
The loss dropped Baylor (26-4, 15-3) into second place in the conference. It was the third defeat in five games for the Bears, who spent five weeks atop the Associated Press poll.
Baylor scored the game’s first nine points before the Mountaineers forged a 19-2 run to take a 19-11 lead. The Bears responded with a 6-2 spurt of their own to pull to within 21-17, but West Virginia did just enough to hold a 24-22 advantage at intermission.
The Mountaineers hit just nine of their 26 shots in the half (34.6 percent) but four of those buckets were 3-pointers. Baylor was not much better from the floor (10 of 27) but was 0 for 6 from beyond the arc.
Both teams had trouble taking care of the ball, with West Virginia committing 13 turnovers in the first half and the Bears recording 12.
Matthews led all scorers with eight points while Butler and MaCio Teague had seven points each to pace Baylor in the half.
—Field Level Media