Unlucky Seven

A shuffled starting lineup yielded no results in on-court performance as the Mountaineer basketball team lost their seventh straight game to Seton Hall on Friday night.

Chris Garnett and Jay Hewitt got their first starts of the season at center and point guard, respectively, but it didn't make much difference as the Pirates cruised past WVU by a score of 81-67. West Virginia proved unable to attain any sort of offensive rhythm, and the results weren't pretty.

West Virginia (7-9, 0-5) shot a hideous 2-16 from three point range, including an opening 0-16 before Josh Yeager canned two late meaningless threes.

"We're not a great three point shooting team, but we can make some three pointers. We started Armstead and Yeager because they can shoot the ball," head coach Gale Catlett said. "It would be nice to make a shot. We have to start making some shots at some point in time."

Lionel Armstead went scoreless in the first half and didn't hit a field goal until the game was well out of reach in the second. With Chris Moss again the sole offensive threat, WVU fell behind by double digits early, then played out another desultory second half that has become all too routine of late.

The opening half set the tone for what was oftentimes an ugly game. WVU and Seton Hall (10-8, 3-3) combined for a 1-19 shooting mark from the field early on as the Mountaineers edged out to a 2-1 lead at the 15:49 mark.

The Pirates began to find their range from long distance at that point however, as three straight threes put them ahead 10-4. From then on, Seton Hall ratcheted up the pressure against WVU's depleted backcourt, forcing 13 turnovers and converting several hoops in transition for a 38-22 halftime lead.

Once again, a Mountaineer opponent went on a first half run to bury WVU deep in a hole from which they could not recover. The Pirates managed a 13-0 run midway through the first half, and the depleted West Virginia squad had no answer.

WVU was a frigid 8-32 from the field in the first half, including 0-8 from three point range. The seven game losing streak is the longest for West Virginia since the 1972-1973 season, and buries the Mountaineers deep in the basement of the Big East's Western Division.

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