NORMAN, Okla. — Umoja Gibson scored a season-high 29 points that included eight 3-pointers and Oklahoma held off No. 9 West Virginia 75-71 after blowing a double-digit halftime lead on Saturday. Box Score
Sooners Blow Big Lead
The Sooners (6-1, 2-1 Big 12) had an 18-point advantage at halftime after going into the break with a 38-20 lead.
However, the Mountaineers, who shot 23.3% (7 of 30) from the field in the first half, opened the second half with a dominant 20-7 run and pulled within five at 45-40 before knotting the score at 60-all on a Jalen Bridges’ 3-pointer with 5:05 left to play.
Austin Reaves then scored five straight points – knocking down a long 2-point jumper and then connected on a 3-pointer – to give Oklahoma the lead for good with 3:40 remaining.
Gibson shot 10 of 14 from the field and went 8-for-11 from 3-pointers to go with his five rebounds to lead the way for the Sooners, who have won three straight against West Virginia (8-3, 1-2).
Reaves added 13 points, four rebounds, and three assists, while De’Vion Harmon ended with 10 points and four assists for Oklahoma, which made 11 3-pointers and shot 42.2% overall from the field.
Taz Sherman and Jalen Bridges each scored 19 points for West Virginia, which was losing for the second time in Big 12 conference play after going down 79-65 to No. 3 Kansas on Dec. 22.
Miles McBride had 15 points with four assists, three steals, and three rebounds and Emmitt Matthews Jr. ended with 11 points and four rebounds for the Mountaineers, who shot 14-for-24 for 58.3% from 3-pointers and shot 40.0% overall from the field.
Saturday’s defeat means coach Bob Huggins must wait to record his 300th win as the coach of West Virginia.
Meanwhile, the Mountaineers were without sophomore forward Oscar Tshiebwe after he left the team for personal reasons on Friday. It is believed he will not return this season.
The West Virginia Mountaineers will visit in-state rival Oklahoma State on Monday before returning home next Saturday to host No. 8 Texas, who handed Kansas its biggest loss in the Bill Self era on Saturday.
The Oklahoma Sooners face a difficult trip to Waco to take on undefeated No. 2 Baylor on Wednesday and before visiting No. 3 Kansas on Saturday.