MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — Join Allan Taylor from the WVU Coliseum, where West Virginia and Purdue face off Sunday afternoon in a nonconference matchup.
PURDUE 73, WEST VIRGINIA 70 — Final
With the Boilermakers unable to seal the game at the foul line, West Virginia had a final chance to tie with 4.3 seconds left. Off a missed free throw, Harris rushed into the forecourt and pulled up for a desperation 3, but Purdue’s Terone Johnson deflected it. Harris finished with 24 points, but the Mountaineers slip to 7-5 and will go into the Christmas break without a quality win.
PURDUE 70, WEST VIRGINIA 65 — 35.9 second half
The Boilermakers are 281st nationally in free-throw shooting and have missed 2-of-3 here in the late going, giving West Virginia a small window to rally. But WVU just isn’t making shots today—something you’d expect the Mountaineers to do at home.
PURDUE 67, WEST VIRGINIA 60 — 2:05 second half
Whether it was Nate Adrian missing an open 3 from the top of the key or Watkins watching a near tip-in roll off the rim, West Virginia had several chances to tie or take the lead against Purdue, but to no avail. Terone Johnson has 17 points to lead Purdue, while Harris (21) and Williams (20) are trying to keep WVU in it. But Purdue’s help defense has done a stellar job keeping Staten away from the rim.
PURDUE 55, WEST VIRGINIA 52 — 7:05 second half
Harris and Williams are giving the Mountaineers life—Harris with his aggressive drives (19 points) and Williams with his fight on the boards (10 rebounds). WVU has narrowed the rebounding deficit to 37-32. But at 2-of-14 from 3-point range, West Virginia is due to knock down some perimeter jumpers sooner or later. Henderson is just 1-of-6 from long range despite having some open looks.
PURDUE 52, WEST VIRGINIA 44 — 10:28 second half
Huggins calls timeout as WVU’s defense has slipped and Purdue opens its biggest lead of the game. Kendall Stephens was left alone on the wing for a 3-pointer and Bryson Scott—one of Purdue’s prized freshmen—sank an open midrange jumper. Purdue is shooting 40 percent as the Mountaineers have played various zones.
PURDUE 47, WEST VIRGINIA 43 — 11:34 second half
Harris just made a Kobe-like turnaround fadeaway on the baseline, and followed it up with a jumper in the lane. That gives him 15 points overall and six in the span of four minutes as he’s clearly looking to show some offensive aggression. But Purdue has a 10-6 edge in second-half rebounds and a 32-25 edge overall. (Foul update: Adrian and Watkins have three each for WVU.)
PURDUE 40, WEST VIRGINIA 35 — 15:35 second half
Terone Johnson’s 3 and Ronnie Johnson’s layup made it a seven-point lead for the Boilermakers out of halftime. (Wasn’t Purdue supposed to stink on the road?) Staten tried to restore order with a coast-to-coast drive and slam, but his contested dunk attempt ricocheted off the back rim. A Harris layup stopped the Purdue run.
PURDUE 35, WEST VIRGINIA 33 — Halftime
Travis Carroll’s putback with three seconds left staked the Boilermakers to a slim halftime lead. It also gave Putdue a 22-19 edge in rebounds. For WVU, Williams had a monstrous first half with 12 points and seven rebounds. (He also had a free throw wiped off by a lane violation on Remi Dibo.) Harris has nine points while Staten has only four. … Purdue got seven first-half points each from the Johnson brothers (Terone and Ronnie) and the exquisitely named Basil Smotherman.
PURDUE 30, WEST VIRGINIA 27 — 3:27 first half
Harris has nine points, including a spinning runner in the lane on which he had to find loft over 7-footer A.J. Hammons. Speaking of Hammons, he has four points and six rebounds off the bench, asserting himself like a talented big man should. However, right before the media timeout he picked up his second foul. Purdue has 11 in the half. WVU has eight fouls, including two on Staten.
WEST VIRGINIA 23, PURDUE 22 — 7:11 first half
Devin Williams hits two face-up jumpers and has six points and five rebounds in 10 minutes of action. He also hit two free throws, which is noteworthy for a freshman who entered today as a 47-percent foul shooter. Kevin Noreen checked in a 9:41 mark and checked out 38 seconds later with two fouls. One, on a high-post screen, was questionable; the second, a body-block on Boilermakers guard Terone Johnson, was not.
WEST VIRGINIA 14, PURDUE 14 — 11:55 first half
Purdue reeled off eight unanswered points to knot the game. The rebounds are even at 10-all, but WVU’s shooting has tailed off in the last few minutes, down to 29 percent. The Boilermakers have been whistled for five fouls to West Virginia’s two, but Purdue’s much deeper bench can absorb that.
WEST VIRGINIA 14, PURDUE 12 — 12:30 first half
WVU’s 14-6 lead doesn’t last long. After Purdue coach Matt Painter sends in five reserves, Kendall Stephens and Sterling Carter hit back-to-back 3s and Bob Huggins calls timeout.
WEST VIRGINIA 9, PURDUE 6 — 15:21 first half
Eron Harris had an opening shot airball but responded with a pull-up 3 and a midrange 2. Also the Brandon Watkins Experience continues: He was WVU’s first player off the bench—building off that stellar showing against Marshall—and quickly grabbed two boards and a steal. Is it too late to nominate this kid for the Wooden Award?