Derek Culver’s double-double powered No. 12 West Virginia to a 66-57 victory over Kansas State in Big 12 play on Saturday afternoon in Morgantown, W.Va.
The Mountaineers (17-4, 5-3) pulled away with a 10-1 run midway through the second half and led by as many as 14 at 49-35. The Wildcats (9-12, 2-6) got no closer than eight points the rest of the way.
Culver had 19 points and 14 rebounds and was the only player in double figures for West Virginia, which has won three of its last four games.
David Sloan scored 13 points and Xavier Sneed added 11 for Kansas State, which shot 36.7 percent from the field and just 17.6 percent (3 of 17) from 3-point distance.
West Virginia snapped a three-game losing streak to K-State, including an 84-68 defeat in Manhattan, Kan., two weeks ago. The biggest difference in the two meetings was the 3-point shooting by the Wildcats. K-State hit 9 of 18 shots from beyond the arc at home, but missed 13 straight at one point Saturday.
Foul trouble in the front court also hurt the Wildcats, who were already short-handed as Antonio Gordon sat out the final game of a three-game suspension because of a brawl at Kansas Jan. 21. Starting forwards Makol Mawien and Montavious Murphy each picked up their fourth fouls early in the second half.
The first half met expectations of a defensive battle, with neither team finding the range early. West Virginia used a 10-0 run to grab a 25-16 lead. The Wildcats went 5:16 without scoring a point.
K-State closed the half on an 11-4 run to cut the halftime deficit to 30-27.
Culver led all scorers in the opening half with nine points. K-State was led by Sloan’s seven points.
West Virginia coach Bob Huggins shook things up early, when he subbed out all five starters at the 17:35 mark following a timeout when the Mountaineers couldn’t inbound the ball. WVU, which traditionally uses a deep bench, had 11 players appear in the first 2:30.
—Field Level Media