Published March 09, 2014
Morgantown, WV – Morgantown, WV (SportsNetwork.com) - Juwan Staten had 24 points, nine assists and five rebounds as West Virginia held off eighth-ranked Kansas for a 92-86 win at WVU Coliseum on Saturday.
The Mountaineers (17-14, 9-9 Big 12) led by as many as 25 in the second half, but saw that lead evaporate to just five with less than a minute to go. WVU went 7-for-8 from the line down the stretch to seal its first-ever win over Kansas.
Eron Harris added 28 points on 5-of-7 shooting from 3-point range and Devin Williams finished with 22 points and 13 rebounds for the Mountaineers, who will face Texas in the opening round of the Big 12 tournament.
Andrew Wiggins provided his most impressive performance of the season, pouring in a season-high 41 points to go with eight rebounds, five steals, four blocks and two assists. The highly-touted freshman was 12-for-18 from the field and finished 15-for-19 from the free-throw line.
"I think Wiggins showed everybody today why he is going to be the first or second pick in the draft," WVU coach Bob Huggins said. "He made hard shots."
Perry Ellis added 14 points for Kansas (23-8, 14-4). The Jayhawks dropped two of their last three regular-season games, but had already secured the top seed in the upcoming Big 12 tournament.
"I thought West Virginia played great," said Kansas head coach Bill Self. "I thought Staten controlled the game, and Harris was terrific, and Williams was by far the best big (man) in the game. He (Williams) was great."
Kansas will play the winner of Oklahoma State/Texas Tech in the quarterfinals of the Big 12 tournament.
Harris' 3-pointer just over three minutes into the second half had WVU up 64-39. Wiggins then opened up a 10-2 run with a three-point play to pull the Jayhawks within 66-49. Wiggins scored the first seven points of the burst.
WVU managed to stretch its lead back to 21, 76-55, with 8 1/2 minutes to go, but a 13-2 run from Kansas, capped with a Wiggins triple, had the Jayhawks within 10 with 6:16 to go.
The Mountaineers scored seven straight to make it 85-68 with just over four minutes to go, but Kansas scored 12 straight to rally within five.
First, Wiggins buried a wide-open 3-pointer from the right wing then stole the ensuing inbounds pass under the basket and slammed it home. Wiggins then knocked down a jumper to make it 85-75 before Tarik black tipped in a Jamari Traylor miss and Frank Mason capped the flurry with a 3-pointer at the 1:25 mark.
Staten went to the line twice around a Wiggins missed 3-pointer and was 3- for-4, but Mason nailed a triple with 25 seconds left to keep Kansas alive. Harris converted a pair of free throws on the other end, but Brannen Greene nailed a trey with 12 ticks showing.
Harris was fouled again and made both free throws and Andrew White missed a 3- pointer in the closing seconds as the Mountaineers held on for the win.
The teams traded baskets over the first four minutes of the game. Williams knocked down a pair of free throws to spark a personal 9-2 run that staked the Mountaineers to an 18-11 lead.
After Traylor pulled the Jayhawks within five, 22-17, with 11:39 to go in the first half, WVU opened a 12-6 run, capped with back-to-back jumpers from Williams to make it 34-23 just inside the eight-minute mark.
Wayne Selden buried a 3-pointer and Wiggins blocked a shot on the other end before going the length of the floor and throwing down an emphatic tomahawk slam to pull the Jayhawks within six, 34-28. WVU responded with six straight points to stretch its lead back to 12 just moments later.
The Mountaineers took a 50-38 lead into the break. It was the most points Kansas has allowed in the first half all season.
WVU has nine wins over top-10 teams under head coach Bob Huggins ... The Mountaineers were 17-for-20 from the free throw line in the second half ... WVU shot 56.3 percent from 3-point range ... Kansas in 0-4 this season when it's are outrebounded ... Wiggins scored 24 points in the second half.