6:00pm: Sunday Sportsline

Morton’s 26 helps No. 25 West Virginia women outscore Frogs 97-84

FORT WORTH, Texas  – Jessica Morton scored a career-high 26 points, Bria Holmes finished with 24 and Teana Muldrow post her first career double-double with 21 points and 10 rebounds as No. 25 West Virginia crushed TCU 97-84 on Sunday in women’s basketball action.

The Mountaineers (16-4, 5-2 Big 12), who scored their most points in four Big 12 seasons, led 50-23 at halftime after closing the second quarter on a 29-5 run.

“We have a lot of people who can score,” said WVU coach Mike Carey. “I’ve said this all along this is the best shooting team we’ve had for years all the way around. We had more than one or two hitting 3s today, and I think that really helped us in the first half.”

TCU (11-8, 3-5) used five 3-pointers in the fourth quarter to cut the deficit to 11 with two minutes remaining but West Virginia hit 12 free throws in the fourth quarter to seal the win. AJ Alix made eight field goals, including four from 3-point range, finishing with a career-best 26 points to lead the Horned Frogs.

“The second half was much more like we needed to play from the very beginning of the game,” said TCU coach Raegan Pebley. “In the Big 12 whether you’re playing ranked opponents or non-ranked opponents it doesn’t matter, you can’t waste time. If you waste time, anyone in this league can double you up real fast.

“West Virginia is a great team, and they did a better job I think especially at the beginning of the game of sticking to playing to their strengths and their game plan.”

Holmes dished out a team-leading eight assists, while moving to third on WVU’s scoring ledger with 1,758 career points.

“I was worried about the (week-long) layoff because I thought we’d have a lot of energy or come off sloppy,” said Carey. “We’re deeper this year off the bench. When somebody is having a bad night, someone else can step up and have a good night.”

West Virginia shot 56.1 percent (37-of-66) from the field and connected on 7-of-17 from the 3-point line. TCU was limited to 45.5 percent shooting, but knocked down 57.9 percent (22-of-38) in the second half. The Mountaineers outrebounded the Horned Frogs, 38-28, and scored 29 points off 20 TCU turnovers. The West Virginia bench outscored TCU 53-12.

WVU remains on the road and takes on No. 19 Oklahoma on Wednesday at 8 p.m.

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