CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Like everyone watching inside the Charleston Civic Center, Juwan Staten recognized West Virginia enjoyed a monumental talent advantage over William & Mary.
So by the end of Sunday afternoon’s 82-45 runaway, the point guard was cautious about what WVU had accomplished.
“It’s hard to say because of the level of competition,” Staten said. “But we played well, we defended. It’s a confidence-builder.”
Staten certainly looked confident enough, posting 15 points and six assists. And upon grabbing his 10th rebound with 3:22 remaining, the junior had the second double-double of his college career. The first came Nov. 24, 2010, during his freshman season at Dayton, when he compiled 10 points and 10 assists against Florida A&M.
No play was more emphatic than Staten grabbing a defensive rebound in the first half and racing toward the other end, where he elevated over Tribe guard Terry Tarpey for a rim-rattling dunk.
It brought to mind the dunk Staten hammered home at Virginia Tech only to be erased by a foul call. Which was more satisfying?
“I’ll say the one tonight, because it counted,” Staten said.
Teammate Terry Henderson, who was trailing on the play, agreed that Staten’s explosive jam sparked West Virginia.
“That dunk really set it off,” Henderson said. “I was hyped—I was right behind him. He was way up over the rim.”
Though West Virginia (8-5) was only a 9-point favorite over William & Mary (6-5), it led 41-24 at half and pulled out to a 40-point lead in the final four minutes.
“We went out and handled them,” Staten said. “It just goes to show that if we play the way we’re supposed to play, we can win games.”
See Staten’s postgame comments above.