West Virginia 36-32–68
The No. 5 seed West Virginia Mountaineers defeated the Mid-American Conference Champion, No. 12 seed Buffalo Bulls — who were making their 1st NCAA Tournament appearance — in a Round of 64 game in the Midwest Region of the 2015 NCAA Tournament.
West Virginia avoided the dreaded 5-12 upset, and No. 5 seeds went 4-0 in the Round of 64 in the 2015 NCAA Tournament’s first two days. OWest Virginia also helped continue to shift the trend for the Big-12 conference on Day 2. On Day 1, the Big-12 conference struggled, losing Iowa State, Baylor and Texas — the first two to monumental upsets.
West Virginia plays the winner of No. 4 Maryland vs No. 13 Valparaiso in the Round of 32 on Sunday.
Click here for a full box score and continued recap of the game.
West Virginia’s Late 1st-half Run Helps Them to a 10-point Halftime Lead
In a half dominated by two runs, the first had West Virginia opening up the game with a 24-11 run, looking like a blowout early. As we’ve seen, so far, in the 2015 NCAA Tournament, double-digit leads are nowhere close to being safe.
Buffalo would make a run to cut the lead to three at 29-26 before the Mountaineers finished the half on another 7-0 run to extend their lead to 10 at halftime.
The Mountaineers best player, guard Juwan Staten, leads the team in scoring with 10. Teammate Devin Williams has seven.
Buffalo Storms Out of Gate With a 7-0 2nd-half Run
The Bulls cut the Mountaineers’ lead back to just three at 36-33 in the first few minutes of the 2nd half, forcing West Virginia head coach Bob Huggins to go to his bench must sooner than he anticipated.
Buffalo would eventually go down by 12 again, only to make a run to tie the game at 62-62 with 2:10 remaining. West Virginia scored the final six points to hold on for the victory.