West Virginia beats No. 11 Kansas State to help NCAA hopes

West Virginia forward Emmitt Matthews Jr. (1) reacts while defended by Kansas State guard...
West Virginia forward Emmitt Matthews Jr. (1) reacts while defended by Kansas State guard Markquis Nowell (1) during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game on Saturday, March 4, 2023, in Morgantown, W.Va. (AP Photo/Kathleen Batten)(Kathleen Batten | AP)
Published: Mar. 4, 2023 at 3:49 PM CST
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MORGANTOWN, W.Va. (AP) — Erik Stevenson scored 27 points, Kedrian Johnson added 23 and West Virginia gave its NCAA Tournament hopes a big boost with an 89-81 victory over No. 11 Kansas State on Saturday.

Emmitt Matthews added 20 points and Tre Mitchell scored 14 for West Virginia (18-13, 7-11 Big 12), which has won three of four heading into the conference tournament.

Stevenson, Johnson, Matthews, Mitchell and West Virginia’s other seniors sang John Denver’s “Country Roads” following a home win for the final time before going into the student section to celebrate.

Before a sellout crowd, West Virginia rallied from 10 points down to take a 39-37 halftime lead and never trailed after that, shooting 58% (15 of 26) from the floor in the second half.

Kansas State (23-8, 11-7) was within 61-57 when Johnson blocked Markquis Nowell’s layup attempt, and Stevenson hit a 3-pointer at the other end of the court. Stevenson hit another 3 less than 2 minutes later for a 69-59 lead with 8:49 remaining.

Kansas State went scoreless over a nearly three-minute stretch and the Mountaineers padded their lead at the free-throw line, going 7 of 8 en route to their largest lead, 84-69, with 2:42 left.

Kansas State saw its four-game winning streak snapped. Nowell and Keyontae Johnson each scored 24 points for the Wildcats and Cam Carter finished with 13.


Kansas State: The Wildcats scored the first eight points of the game but couldn’t keep the momentum going. Despite the loss, Kansas State capped its best regular season since 2018-19, when they went 24-7.

West Virginia: The Mountaineers had a 22-9 advantage at the free-throw line and forced 20 turnovers.


Both teams play in the Big 12 tournament that starts Wednesday in Kansas City, Missouri. The Wildcats have a first-round bye.