Lamont West came off the bench to hit seven of West Virginia’s 15 3-pointers, and he scored a career-high 27 points Sunday as the Mountaineers outscored St. Joseph’s 97-90 for fifth place in the Myrtle Beach Invitational at HTC Center in Conway, S.C.
Sagaba Konate added 15 points, nine rebounds and four assists before fouling out with 1:38 left. Wesley Harris contributed 13 points and Esa Ahmad chipped in with 12 for West Virginia (2-2). evened its record to 2-2.
Lamarr Kimble fired in a game-high 31 points for the Hawks (3-2), while Charlie Brown Jr. canned four 3-pointers and scored 18 before fouling out.
Taylor Funk netted 16 points and Jared Bynum scored 13, but he made only 4 of 12 field goals and 4 of 10 free throws.
In a game that featured 20 ties and 14 lead changes, the Mountaineers finally pulled away. Ahmad drilled a 3-pointer with 9:16 left to open up a 79-69 lead, capping a 15-5 run in which he and West combined for 12 points in less than 3 1/2 minutes.
Brandon Knapper sank a 3-pointer with 6:03 remaining to up West Virginia’s advantage to 87-73, and the Mountaineers cruised to the finish line. West capped his best game with a breakaway dunk in the final 15 seconds.
Both teams sank 50 percent of their shots and combined to connect on 28 3-pointers. St. Joseph’s lost despite going 13 of 25 on 3-pointers and committing only seven turnovers.
The Mountaineers outrebounded the Hawks 39-29 and enjoyed a 46-6 advantage in bench scoring, thanks largely to West.
In the first half, the teams played fast and shot well. West’s 3-pointer with 10:10 left boosted West Virginia into a 26-26 tie.
The teams went back and forth until a little spurt by the Mountaineers near the end of the half. West’s 3-pointer with 48 seconds left gave them a four-point edge, but Kimble’s layup sent St. Joseph’s to the locker room trailing only 51-49.
—Field Level Media