BC beats WVU for season sweep

No. 5 Boston College extended its best-ever start with a 62-50 win over West Virginia on Tuesday for a season-sweep of the series.

Craig Smith scored 23 points and Jared Dudley added 15 to lead the Eagles (19-0, 8-0 Big East) to a school-record tying 19 straight wins.

That tied the streak set under head coach Bob Cousy in 1969. The Eagles remain one of two undefeateds (No. 1 Illinois, 22-0).

WVU (12-7, 2-6) lost for the sixth time in seven games. It hit just 35 percent of its shots and again struggled from three-point range (6-23 for 26 percent).

The game swung on an inside mismatch between West Virginia's Kevin Pittsnogle and Boston College's Smith.

Mountaineer starting center D'or Fischer was charged with two quick first half fouls and sat for most of the period. He then picked up his third on the first play of the second half, leaving Pittsnogle to fend off the inside versus Smith for almost the entire meaningful game.

Smith had nine points at the half and ended with his 79th career double-figure scoring game. Pittsnogle, conversely, had just four points against a myriad of turnovers.

Three of his turnovers came in the final 3:41 of the first half, when BC made its 10-0 run to lead 25-23 at the break. Smith then scored the first eight points of the second half, the last of which put BC ahead for good at 33-32 with 15:25 remaining.

Smith, Dudley and Jermaine Watson (13 points) continued to drive, and WVU had no answer as the Eagles built a 54-43 lead with two minutes left.

Boston College's largest lead was its last.

BC, which had a 22-5 free throw edge, has attempted more foul shots than its foes in every game. This time the edge was 22-5. WVU never took a free throw until the 31:33 into the game.

Mike Gansey and Tyrone Sally led the Mountaineers with 10 points each.

BC beat WVU for the seventh time in eight games.

The loss effectively knocked West Virginia out of whatever NCAA thoughts it had after starting 10-0. WVU must face rival Pitt – which it has not beaten in three years – twice in its last eight regular season games.

The Mountaineers will not be in the tournament for the seventh straight year, the longest streak since 1974-75 to 1980-81.

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