MORGANTOWN, W.Va. (AP)—Kevin Jones scored 26 points for West Virginia, and Gary Browne hit a 3-pointer to send the game to overtime and a layup to help clinch a 77-74 victory over Cincinnati on Saturday.
Trailing 69-66 with 24 seconds left in regulation, West Virginia (15-5, 5-2 Big East) came out of a timeout and Deniz Kilicli got the ball in the hands of Browne, who sank the shot of the game with 14 seconds remaining to send it into OT.
In overtime, Jones and Jabarie Hinds combined to go 4-for-4 from the foul line in the first 2 1/2 minutes and the Mountaineers never trailed. Browne then had a layup and Kilicli hit a jumper as the Mountaineers outscored Cincinnati (15-5, 5-2) 8-5 in OT to seal the win.
Jones’ key baskets throughout the game helped nullify the fact that his running mate Darryl “Truck” Bryant was held to just six points. Jones leads the Big East in scoring (20.4 points per game) and rebounds (11.4). Bryant was averaging 18.1 points.
Browne and Kilicli added 13 points for the Mountaineers, and Hinds ended up with 12.
Cashmere Wright was the leading scorer for Cincinnati with 17 points. He was followed by Dion Dixon and Sean Kilpatrick with 12 apiece, and Yancy Gates added 10.
West Virginia led by as many as nine points in the first half, but Cincinnati closed with a 12-2 run to head into intermission leading 33-32.
There were two ties and six lead changes for the rest of regulation.
Cincinnati led by as much as 60-55 with 5:41 left, but the Mountaineers scored five straight points for the second tie of the half.
Wright made that lead three points with 3:25 remaining, but a basket by Browne, one of two free throws by Kilicli and then a Jones 3 in front of his own bench sent the Mountaineers ahead 66-65 with 1:50 to go in regulation.
Wright scored four points in a row for a 69-66 advantage with 28 seconds to go before Browne’s big 3-pointer.
In the extra frame, Gates missed two consecutive shots in front of the West Virginia basket and Hinds’ free throws gave the Mountaineers a four-point lead with 2:49 left.
Kilpatrick drained a 3 to pull the Bearcats within one, but Hinds stole an errant Cincinnati pass on the next possession and scored when his shot was goal-tended.
Cincinnati scored another basket, but Kilicli hit a left-handed hook at 32.6 seconds left to ice the victory for West Virginia.
- West Virginia edges Cincinnati 77-74 in OT
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