MORGANTOWN, W.Va. (AP) — Dwight Hardy scored 20 points to lead St. John’s to an 81-71 victory over West Virginia in the Big East opener for both teams.
The game marked the first time West Virginia lost at home since Feb. 8 against Villanova.
The Red Storm (8-3) grabbed the lead early in the first half and used a balanced attack offensively to take a six-point lead into halftime.
The largest lead for either team was a 14-point St. John’s lead late in the second half.
Twice in the second half, West Virginia (8-3) cut the Red Storm’s lead to three points, and both times Justin Brownlee came up with a big bucket to slow down the Mountaineers’ momentum.
In the first half, St. John’s held West Virginia to just 30 percent shooting, while converting on 50 percent of its shots.
The Mountaineers also had a hard time stopping St. John’s in transition, as the Red Storm scored 10 points off fast breaks and dominated in the paint, outscoring the Mountaineers 40-6.
Brownlee and D.J. Kennedy scored 17 points each for St. John’s, while Justin Burrell was also in double figures, scoring 13 points.
Kevin Jones led the way for West Virginia, scoring 17 points. Truck Bryant added 14 and Casey Mitchell and Jonnie West had 12 apiece.
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