Hilltoppers End Mountain Cats' Season With 78-66 Win in WVIAC Quarterfinals
02/28/13... (Box Score) Top-seeded West Liberty (WV) University used a 20-9 second half run to break open a five-point game en route to ended the ninth-seeded Mountain Cats' season with a 78-66 loss in Thursday's Quarterfinals of the 2013 WVIAC Basketball Tournament at the Civic Center, Charleston, W.Va. Jordan Miller's (Vinco, Pa.) scored 19 points to pace three Pitt-Johnstown players who scored in double figures. The Mountain Cats finished with a 15-13 overall record.
Bubby Goodwin's 3-pointer seven minutes into the game put West Liberty in front 15-8, before Nick Novak's (Murrysville, Pa.) lay-up closed out a 9-2 Mountain Cat run that tied it at 17 2:31 later.
The Hilltoppers pushed it back out to seven, then into double digits at 29-19 on an Alex Falk 3-pointer with 6:15 left in the half.
Pitt-Johnstown answered to cut it to 34-30 on Miller's pull-up jumper, before West Liberty went into the halftime break leading 37-32.
Ian Vescovi's (Patton, Pa.) bucket to open the second half got the Mountain Cat deficit down to three, but the Hilltoppers scored the next seven to extend back to 10 at 44-34 just over a minute later.
Pitt-Johnstown cut it in half on Andrew Cressler's (Pittsburgh, Pa.) short jumper at the 15:38 mark, but each time the Mountain Cats would get close, West Liberty had an answer.
This time, West Liberty countered with a 20-9 run, closed out by Shawn Dyer's 3-pointer,
at 8:49 that put the Hilltoppers up by 16 at 68-52.
The Mountain Cats got as close as 11 on two occasions, with the last coming on Bill Luther's (Gibsonia, Pa.) tip-in with 3:35 to play, but West Liberty.
Miller scored 19 points and dished out four assists, and Novak added 16 points, grabbed four rebounds and had six assists. Cressler rounded out the double figure scorers with 15 points and five rebounds. Vescovi had seven points, and Luther finished with seven points and eight rebounds for the Mountain Cats.
Novak holds the Mountain Cat record for assists (545), field goals-made (759), and career free-throw percentage (86.1%) and is second on the all-time scoring list (2,023 pts.). Miller is Pitt-Johnstown's all-time leader in 3-point field goals with 294 and is also ninth on the scoring list (1,396 pts.) and tied for ninth on the assists list (331 assts.), while Luther is fourth on the career 3-point field goals list with 185.
Pitt-Johnstown shot 44% from the field, but just 1-10 from 3-point range, and 13-19 from the free-throw line, while the Hilltoppers, who shot 42% from the floor, hit 12 of their 27 3-point field goal attempts and 16 of their 25 free-throws.
Dyer scored a game-high 21 points, while Falk and Goodwin each collected 14 points for the Hilltoppers, who improved to 28-1.
West Liberty advances to take on fourth-seeded Wheeling Jesuit (WV) University in Saturday's WVIAC Semifinals.