Making A Case

While the men's basketball team came up short in its efforts to all but secure a spot in the NCAA tournament, the women took a big step in moving off the bubble with a 57-46 win at Pitt.

The Mountaineers, led by LaQuita Owens' 19 points, throttled the high-scoring Panthers with a strong defensive effort. Pitt was just 13-54 from the field for the game (24.1%) and made just one of eight from three-point range. WVU's defensive efforts were also helped by seven blocked shots and eight steals.

Ownes did all of her damage in the second half after being shut out in the first. Most of it came from long range, as she drained five of six three-point attempts to forestall nay thoughts of a Panther comeback.

Yinka Sanni added 14 points on 5-5 shooting from the field, but was again saddled with foul problems that kept her from an even bigger night. She was on the court for just 13 minutes, but had six rebounds and two blocked shots during the limited outing.

No other Mountaineers scored in double figures, but Chakhia Cole chipped in with seven points and seven rebounds, while Ashley Powell contributed eight assists. Owens led all rebounders with eight.

With the win, WVU puts itself in contention for an at-large NCAA bid, but can't consider itself a lock just yet. The Mountaineers are now 18-9 overall and 9-5 in the Big East, with games remaining against Cincinnati at home and at Louisville.A win in one of those games would likley put WV above most other bubble contenders, while two more wins overall (which could also be gained in the Big East tournament) would assure a bid.

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