West Virginia men’s basketball’s losing streak moves to three straight as the Mountaineers fell to the 18th-ranked Texas Tech Red Raiders 78-65 in Lubbock on Saturday.
The inside game made the difference in this contest. The Red Raiders scored 30 of their points in the paint while out-rebounding the Mountaineers 39-29 — including 29 boards on the offensive glass.
The contest was a wire-to-wire battle, though. Although Texas Tech was in front for 29 minutes of play, the lead changed hands nine times as the Red Raiders were unable to actually build on their lead. In fact, they didn’t actually get out in front by double digits until there was just over a minute remaining in the contest.
That’s when the Red Raiders pulled away — Terrence Shannon Jr. led a late awakening of the offense, helping the team make its last seven shots over the last six minutes of the game, of those, he made four.
Shannon led the game with 23 points.
It was a physical battle also, as 50 fouls were called between the two teams. WVU got the majority of the whistles with 30, and that hurt the Mountaineers in the stretch as four players fouled out.
Texas Tech finished the contest with all of its players, although two racked up four fouls by its end.
Taz Sherman led WVU with 21 points in his first 20-plus point game since his return from a COVID-19 absence, adding five rebounds and two assists. He also gave up six turnovers, the most for WVU, which lost 17 as a team — their second-highest total of the season.
Malik Curry was the only other Mountaineer in double digits, adding 11 before fouling out in the final minute.
Kevin Obanor (18 points) and Bryson Williams (13) were the other double-digit scorers for Texas Tech. Each had four rebounds, while Williams added an assist.
The Red Raiders improve to 15-4 on the season and bump to second in the league with a 5-2 Big 12 mark WVU slides to 13-5 and 2-4 in the conference, which slots the Mountaineers at seventh.
West Virginia hosts Oklahoma on Tuesday at 8 p.m. ET.