PITTSBURGH (93-7 The FAN) — Kevin Jones continued his hot streak for the Mountaineers Monday night, scoring 18 points and 12 rebounds for a double-double in a 77-56 win over Akron.
WVU (4-1) went on a 15-2 run in the final 3:43 of the first half to take a 43-20 lead into halftime. The Zips never recovered.
Jabarie Hinds added 19 points and Deniz Kilicli and Truck Bryant scored 11 points each as other Mountaineers in double figures. WVU outscored Akron 42-22 in the paint — a huge deciding factor in the game — in large part because of Jones and Kilicli.
Akron shot just 27 percent from the field in the first half. The Zips were considerably better in the second half, shooting 43 percent, and actually outscored WVU 36-34 in the second half, but it wasn’t nearly enough to make up for their first-half issues.
West Virginia netted 32 points off of 20 Akron turnovers, eight on the fast break.
“I thought Jabarie and Gary Browne together were very, very good, particularly in the run that we made in the second part of the first half,” West Virginia coach Bob Huggins said, according to WVU’s official website. “We play pretty good, then we kind of let down, and then we play pretty good again and we let down. We’ve got to shorten those gaps when we kind of fall asleep and don’t do what we’re supposed to do.”
The Mountaineers return to action Saturday night at No. 21 Mississippi State.