Chesapeake Energy Capital Classic: WVU vs. Marshall

Coming off a big win against Rutgers, the Mountaineers head to Charleston to take on rival Marshall.  While last year they lost a close game 75-71, the Mountaineers are looking for vengeance and there is a very good chance that they will get it.

Senior forward Kevin Jones has been unstoppable this year averaging 20.1 points per game (ppg) and 11.6 rebounds per game.  Against Rutgers Jones scored 24 points and grabbed 14 rebounds.  With the Thundering Herd being less than impressive on the defensive side of the ball Jones and the rest of the Mountaineer offense should have a huge game.  One aspect of the game that the Herd outrank the Mountaineers in is rebounds.  They are ranked third in rebounds averaging 42.9 a game, which is probably the only positive thing that can be said about the Herd.

Another player the Herd will have to look out for is senior guard Darryl "Truck" Bryant.  He is averaging 17.8 ppg.  Bryant dropped 18 points against Rutgers and he will look to pour it on against Marshall.  In two game a few weeks ago Bryant had 25 points against 9th ranked Georgetown and scored 29 points against Rutgers,  Both these teams are much more competitive than Marshall and if Truck can find his groove expect for him to have another big game.

On the defensive side of the ball the Mountaineers could do a little better.  They average seven steals and three blocks per game.  The Thundering Herd average 14 turnovers per game and have 241 on the season.  If the Mountaineers can play tough defense then they should be able to increase their  steals and blocks.  The one player the Mountaineers will have to focus on is Damier Pitts who leads the Herd with 58 turnovers and the Mountaineers will look to increase that stat.  Freshman guard Gary Browne leads the Mountaineers with steals averaging 1.5 per game and leads the team with 27 on the year.  Jones averages 1.1 blocks a game and is way ahead of the rest of his teammates with 20 on the season. 

The Mountaineers will have to play hard the whole game and not expect this to be an easy win as last year showed.  If they can dominate both sides of the ball then the Mountaineers will come back to Morgantown with a win.

Prediction:  WVU-88  Marshall-66

Player of the Game: Kevin Jones 24 points, 12 rebounds, 3 assists


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