Jevon Carter sets all-time steals mark as No. 19 West Virginia rolls
MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — Jevon Carter scored 25 points, grabbed nine rebounds and became West Virginia's all-time steals leader in the 19th-ranked Mountaineers' 102-69 victory over NJIT on Thursday night.
“Jevon is fun to watch,” West Virginia forward Teddy Allen said. “Even as his teammate, seeing him practice every day, he works at it, man. To see him be successful and reach his goals is cool.”
Carter had five steals against NJIT, making him WVU's all-time leader with 255, passing Greg Jones' record set in 1983.
“It doesn't mean much now,” Carter said. “I'm sure it will mean a lot once I'm done, but right now I'm just focused on game to game and moving on to the next one.”
West Virginia (7-1) started the game sluggish, allowing NJIT to lead throughout the first 10 minutes of the game.
“We can't give up 34 points in the paint to those people,” WVU coach Bob Huggins said. “ We just can't turn people loose the way we turned people loose today. I don't mean they're not good. They're going to win their league I think. We just can't turn people loose in the middle who can finish at the rim or pass it to the wings who are open outside.”
The Mountaineers then outscored NJIT, 31-14, to close the first half and opened the second half with a 15-2 run to cruise to victory.
Allen added a career-high 16 points for the Mountaineers, and Lamont West scored 13 points. James Bolden added 12, and Wesley Harris had 11.
Anthony Tarke led the Highlanders (4-3) with 13 points.
“Any time that you play a Bob Huggins-coached team, it's going to be a well-coached dogfight out there and I just wanted my guys to keep their composure as much as they could,” NJIT coach Brian Kennedy said.
Kennedy had nothing but nice things to say about Carter.
“What a great player,” Kennedy said. “All-American kid. He stepped up really big for them and made some shots. (I) used him as an example to my team out there. We came out for our shootaround, and he was on the court dripping wet (with sweat), and they had their shootaround after us.”
West Virginia will host No. 18 Virginia for the first time since 1985 on Tuesday.