Brent Osborne for WVMetroNews.com
MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — University picked up a statement road win Wednesday night, beating rival and defending state champion Morgantown 54-50 in a battle of top five teams out of the MetroNews Power Index.
Freshman Kaden Metheny hit the game-winning 3 with 13 seconds to go, putting third-ranked University up 52-50.
“Kaden (Metheny) knows he’s good, he’s a very confident player and he’s confident in his ability,” said University coach Joe Schmidle. “He’s a big-time player and big-time players step up in big-time games. The bigger the moment, the better he gets. You don’t expect those kinds of things from freshmen, but that kid is not a typical freshman. He’s a winner and that’s the way he plays the game. You’ve got to love it.”
Geoff Hamperian led University (9-0) with 23 points in the win, while Nicky Solomon, Torin Hanson and Nick Malone all finished in double figures for the No. 5 Mohigans (6-2).
“That was pretty exciting — it felt better than that last six times we’ve played (Morgantown),” Schmidle said. “We handled their defensive pressure fairly well. It was a good game and good to get that monkey off of our backs. To come here, do it on their home floor in front of a packed house is a pretty good feeling.”
It was Morgantown’s first loss to an in-state opponent since regional play in 2015 and University’s first win over the Mohigans since 2013.
“This was a stepping stone for us,” Schmidle said. “We were a good team last year, but we weren’t a great team. I think we’ve beaten some good teams this year, but I don’t think we had beaten a great team until (Wednesday) night.
“We beat a great team in Morgantown – they’ve got a lot of talent, they’re very well coached and we have a lot of respect for them and their program,” he continued. “We’re going to see these guys three or four more times and it’s going to be a battle every time.”