Another Disappointing Defeat

West Virginia had another opportunity to pull an upset this season, and it was another game that the Mountaineers just couldn't find a way to win.

WVU was able to keep it close with No. 14 Oklahoma State earlier this season away from home, so it was expected that the Mountaineers would keep it close with the Cowboys.

What has been expected hasn't been what's happened this season, though. No, not even close.

West Virginia fell to OSU 73-57 behind a dismal second-half effort, and the Mountaineers continue to disappoint in a season that could've been so much more.

"People expect better from us. It's hard to go to class. It's hard to walk around here. There's nothing we can hang our heads on," said WVU forward Kevin Noreen. "At some point, that has to change."

For the first 10 minutes of the game, it looked like the Mountaineers had come to play. Behind some very spirited play led by senior forward Deniz Kilicli, West Virginia took a 12-5 lead and then a 15-8 lead later with more than 10 minutes to play in the half.

It was a performance that was worthy of the standing ovation it received.

WVU was just tougher than the Cowboys. It got to every ball and forced OSU into foul trouble within the first few minutes when guard Marcus Smart recorded his third foul less than three minutes into the contest.

That was really all the positives you could take out of this one, though, as the Mountaineers were dominated over the final 30 minutes.


Early on in the second half, the game seemed to look like it would end in Oklahoma State's favor – and it sure did. Less than halfway through the second half, West Virginia was down by 12 points and was simply falling apart.

With 11:15 to play, Kilicli picked up his fourth foul of the game, and without him in the contest – and others over the past two weeks – it's like WVU just didn't have a chance.

It was really awkward to watch and not at all as awkward to watch the older gentleman in the courtside seats who danced to a song in the first half or the few fans who attempted to dance the Dougie.

A fake-out 3-pointer from forward Kevin Noreen ended in a traveling violation by another player. A few uncontested defensive possessions, particularly in transition, ended with highlight-style dunks.

The last WVU play was indicative of its season – a promising drive to the rim by guard Juwan Staten and an attempted dunk that was unsuccessful. As the clock ran down, Staten just sat on the floor, defeated once again.

It was just another emotionless loss to add to the list.

"We're a lot better than what we were, but I never saw this coming," said WVU head coach Bob Huggins. "I've always taken a lot of pride in the fact that I could get guys to play hard and get guys to compete … For some reason, I just haven't been able to reach this group, which is my fault. I should've been able to find a way to reach them."

West Virginia has proven time and time again that it is not up to the level of its top Big 12 competitors. It will play tough for chunks of a game, but it has never found a way to put it all together.

Time is running out to do it, too. Sure, NCAA tournament hopes are all but gone outside of a Big 12 tournament run that becomes less likely each time the Mountaineers play. WVU can only hope to pull off an upset in the final few weeks of the year to salvage what has really been a disaster.

By the end of the game, Oklahoma State had about three dunks in the final five minutes that would make Sportscenter's top 10 plays. It was just a complete failure at an upset bid once again for West Virginia.

It's starting to become something that I'm used to, and that can't be good.

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