West Virginia knocks off No. 7 Texas Tech, reaches 12 tourney semifinals
KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Emmitt Mathews scored a career-high 28 points as 10th-seeded West Virginia upset No. 7 Texas Tech, 79-74, in the quarterfinals of the Big 12 Tournament on Thursday night.
West Virginia (14-19) advances to the semifinals, against either No. 17 Kansas or Texas, on Friday night.
Jarrett Culver scored 26 points. Tariq Owens had 14, and Matt Mooney had 12 for Texas Tech (26-6).
Matthews hit a corner 3 to give West Virginia a 16-point lead with nine minutes to go, but Texas Tech scored 16 of the next 18 to get within four.
The Red Raiders took a 69-68 lead on a basket by Culver, their first lead since it was 7-5. But the Mountaineers scored seven of the next nine to regain the lead, 75-71.
Culver missed a 3-pointer with 20 seconds left and Tech trailing 77-74, and Matthews sealed the victory with two free throws.
The Red Raiders, one of the hottest teams in the country entering the game, were outrebounded, 44-30.
The Mountaineers went on an 11-2 run early and led by 10 just eight minutes into the game.
The Red Raiders, co-regular season champs, trailed 28-11 in the first half before switching to a zone defense and thwarting the Mountaineer offense as they began to mount a rally.
The Mountaineers live to see another day and sit two wins from a spot in the NCAA Tournament.
The loss hurts the resume and is the worst of the year for the Red Raiders. It was also their first defeat since a Feb. 2 loss at Kansas.