NOTES FROM THE GAME:
West Virginia's 11-point victory in the men's game, 87-76, was just the second time in the last 11 meetings the winning team has won by more than six points. The Mountaineers are 14-4 against Marshall since the game was moved to Charleston on an annual basis.The women fell to 6-12 in Charleston, and their last win in 2005 is the only time Marshall has swept both games of the Capital City Classic.
Of the 37 games played in the MU-WVU men's series (lead by the Mountaineers 27-10, with three games in Morgantown from 1929-32, then restarting with five more in Morgantown and one in Charleston before finally coming to Huntington in 1981-82), 20 of the games were decided by single-digits and four had gone into overtime. On the women's side, WVU leads the series 32-15 and is 32-10 since the Herd won the first five games played starting in 1973-74. 17 have been single digit wins, like last nights, and none have gone to overtime. Three of the last five have been double-digit wins by Carey's teams (7-1 vs. Herd). The Mountaineer women have won four in a row, the men three in a row in match-up with Herd.
WDGG, The Dawg, 93.7 FM, one of Huntington's two flagships for the Thundering Herd/ISP Sports Network, was one of three Kindred Communications stations knocked off the air just as the men's basketball game was tipping off. Also off were the two FM signals of The Planet, 92.7 FM & 98.5 FM as well as WCMI 1340 AM, where Spring Valley hosting St. Albans was scheduled to air. The stations returned to the air sometime after midnight, about the same time the shot clocks at the Charleston Civic Center began working again. A 30-minute delay after halftime ended up with no shot clocks being used and CCC public address announcer, and former Voice of the Herd Don Cook, calling out seconds in increments of five, starting at 20 seconds left on shot clock.
WVU won the "Cheerleader Lift" this season, taking the crown away from the Herd for the first time in three Capital City Classics...Governor Joe Manchin was very casual for the contest, wearing a leather jacket and open collar instead of his normally neutral green-and-blue tie.
The Most Valuable Players for each team were Tynikki Crook (24 points, 10 rebounds) for Marshall and Sarah Miles (23 points) for West Virginia in the women's game. Markel Humphrey, who played on his injured left foot and cracked a front tooth in the game, was the Marshall men's MVP with 13 points and eight rebounds. The senior made only 1-of-7 from the free throw line on the night. Freshman point guard Darryl Bryant, nicknamed "Truck," was the WVU MVP with 22 points, four assists, three turnovers and a steal, nailing 11-of-15 from the line.
Herd mascot Marco had to repair the left horn on his new costume with tape early in the day, before the "Herd Madness" luncheon hosted by the Big Green at the Charleston Marriott got started. A good crowd attended this first all-Marshall luncheon, which will now be a yearly event. The MU Alumni Association social was packed this year, with all tables and chairs filled just shortly after 6 p.m. Herd fans found food and drink, free Herd Insiders and HI 2009/10th Anniversary calendars and green and white Mardi Gras beads, plus raffles for "We Are Marshall" movie items and other door prizes. Many WVU alumni and fans always find their way into the South Hall, as it is the party nearest the front door.
The Charleston Civic Center announced the game was the tenth-consecutive sellout in the series, 12,580. The CCC is in the midst of celebrating its 50th anniversary, and one of the first big events the old arena (6,100 seats originally) held in December of 1958 was the University of Virginia coming in to upset the Mountaineer team coached by Fred Schaus with NBA legend and Hall of Fame member Jerry West (of nearby East Bank High School, located just outside of Charleston) 75-72, and WVU took home a check for $7,000 for playing in the Capital City.
The following year, in the 1959-60 season, the arena hosted both UVA-WVU, with West throwing in 40 in the win over the Cavaliers on Jan. 13. Two days earlier, on Jan. 11, Marshall meet Virginia Tech in a rematch of a Herd win for Coach Jule Rivlin that took place in December of 1959 at the Logan (W.Va.) Field House, 85-80 for MU over VPI. The Hokies gained revenge for that game by beating Marshall at the Civic Center (familiar?) 79-72, behind the heroics of Charleston native and former Stonewall Jackson H.S. General Chris Smith, who scored 26 points. The Herd's John Milhoan scored 22 in Marshall's first game at the CCC, Lou Mott added 16 points, Tex Williams (the father of current Herd player Adam) had 12 poitns and Herman Conner had 14 for MU. Boomer, W.Va., standout Bob Ayersman of Va. Tech added 11 points for the Hokies in the win.
It was announced Wednesday that Marshall and Ohio will play a second game in Charleston for the Herd next season on November 28 as part of an exempt tournament called the Global Sports Classic. The Herd and the Bobcats will then receive three more home games as part of the deal, with teams from leagues like the Southern Conference (WVU a member 1950-69; MU a member 1977-97), the Ohio Valley Conference (MU a member 1948-52) or other like the Atlantic Sun or Big South. The five-team, round-robin set of games will only count as two games, like the Glenn Wilkes Classic was four counting as one game this season in Daytona Beach. Global Sports of Las Vegas will set up the games.