No. 2 West Virginia escapes with 57-54 win over Baylor
West Virginia (15-1, 4-0 Big 12) struggled to make shots the entire game but extended the nation’s longest winning streak to 15, the Mountaineers‘ best since winning 22 straight in 1988-89.
Lamont West and Daxter Miles Jr. led West Virginia with 12 points apiece.
Baylor’s Manu Lecomte scored 13 points and Jo Lual-Acuil Jr. had 11 points and 10 rebounds for his eighth double-double of the season.
West Virginia, which had little inside success on offense against the taller Bears (11-5, 1-3), shot 31.1 percent (19 of 61) from the floor and was held to its lowest point total of the season.
But the Mountaineers never trailed in the second half of a close game with few scoring runs. Baylor made one field goal over the final eight minutes.
Miles threw the ball away but raced to the other end of the court to save it from going out of bounds on Baylor’s fast break, leading to Carter’s tiebreaking 3 for a 54-51 lead.
Miles then forced Lecomte into missing an off-balanced jumper as the shot clock expired. Miles made a free throw with 15.8 seconds left and, after Baylor’s Jake Lindsey hit a 3-pointer with four seconds to go, Carter was fouled and made both free throws for the final margin.
Lecomte’s 3-point try at the buzzer was long and right.
Baylor: The Bears shot 27.6 percent from the floor (8 of 29) in the second half in falling to 0-5 against ranked opponents this season. After starting 10-2, Baylor has lost three of four, with the other recent setbacks coming against No. 8 Texas Tech and No. 16 TCU.
West Virginia: Mountaineers coach Bob Huggins has said it doesn’t matter who scores for his team as long as someone does. It marked the second time in the past three games that Carter, West Virginia’s leading scorer, was held to single digits. He finished with eight points, nine below his team-leading average. Top bench scorer Teddy Allen played just five minutes due to foul trouble and went scoreless.
Baylor: Plays at Iowa State on Saturday.
West Virginia: Plays at No. 8 Texas Tech on Saturday.