MORGANTOWN, W.Va. - A stellar performance from senior center Lanay Montgomery propelled the No. 16/17-ranked West Virginia University women’s basketball team to a 94-53 victory over Morehead State on Wednesday evening at the WVU Coliseum.
West Virginia held an early eight-point advantage, but MSU’s Katelyn Byrd made a triple with 3:09 remaining in the first quarter to give Morehead State a 15-14 lead. Montgomery’s layup 35 seconds later sparked a 13-0 Mountaineer run. Later in the second quarter, WVU used a Montgomery layup and a Katrina Pardee three-pointer to jump start a 17-0 spurt. West Virginia (8-0) scored its second-most points of the season and rolled to a 29th consecutive win against nonconference competition at the WVU Coliseum. Morehead State’s two-game win streak was snapped, as the Eagles fell to 5-3 on the season.
Montgomery’s historic performance included a career-high 23 points, matching a season-high 18 rebounds and blocking six shots in 25 minutes. She made 10-of-11 field goal attempts for 90.9 percent shooting from the field. The Pittsburgh native was just the second WVU player in history to score at least 20-plus points, grab at least 18-plus rebounds and block five or more shots. Only WVU Hall of Famer Georgeann Wells had a better performance against Marshall in 1984, scoring 35 points, pulling down 19 rebounds and blocking eight shots. The double-double was the third for Montgomery this season and the 12th of her career.
Teana Muldrow also netted her third double-double this season with 18 points and 13 rebounds. The junior matched a career-high four assists, blocked three shots and collected three steals. Montgomery and Muldrow are the first WVU duo to tally double-doubles in back-to-back games since Liz Repella and Takisha Granberry accomplished the feat versus FIU and NJIT in November 2008.
“I thought Lanay Montgomery had a great game,” coach Mike Carey said. “Thank goodness we had her today. She was the difference in the game, defensively and offensively, so great job by Lanay. Great game. I’m very proud of her. She has worked extremely hard since she’s been here, so I’m extremely proud of her.”
Tynice Martin reached double-figure scoring for a 10th consecutive game with 17 points. Also in double-figures, Kristina King posted 14 and grabbed seven rebounds.
West Virginia shot 47.4 percent (36-of-76) from the field and 41.2 percent (7-of-17) from behind the arc. The Mountaineers held their ninth consecutive opponent to less than 40 percent shooting and their fourth opponent this season to less than 30 percent shooting, as Morehead State was limited to 29.4 percent (20-of-68) from the field.
In the rebound column, WVU grabbed 59 boards compared to MSU’s 43. The Mountaineers blocked a season-best 15 shots, the most since deflecting 15 against Kansas State on Jan. 21, 2015. WVU also matched a season-high with 20 assists.
Montgomery scored seven of WVU’s first nine points to stretch the Mountaineer lead to 9-4. However, Morehead State tallied made four consecutive buckets, including a Byrd three-pointer to take a 15-14 lead. However, West Virginia answered with a 13-0 run that lasted late in the first quarter and early in the second quarter.
Montgomery’s layup and Pardee’s three-pointer under the six-minute mark in the second quarter sparked a 17-0 run that lasted 4:52, as Morehead State was held scoreless for 5:36. The Mountaineers ended the first half by matching a season-high 52 points in the opening half and leading the Eagles, 52-28. Montgomery completed the first two periods with 14 points, 14 rebounds and four blocks.
In the third quarter, Montgomery added six more points to reach a season-high in points. A Martin jumper at the 4:39 mark extended the Mountaineer lead to 25, 65-40, with 4:39 remaining. WVU went on to push its lead to 43 late in the game and outscored Morehead State, 42-25, in the second half. Miranda Crockett led Morehead State with 18 points.
No. 16/17 West Virginia participates in the SEC/Big 12 Challenge for the first time on Sunday, Dec. 4, in a 4 p.m. tip against Ole Miss. All fans who donate a toy for the WVU Toy Mountain drive will receive free admission for the game or a future women’s basketball game. The first 500 fans will receive a free ugly holiday sweater T-shirt. Additionally, members of the Mountaineer Kids Club will have the opportunity to shoot around on the court following the game.
NOTES: West Virginia leads the series 2-0 over Morehead State … WVU has won 29 consecutive games against nonconference opponents at the Coliseum … West Virginia has limited its first eight opponents this season to less than 40 percent shooting … WVU matched its season high with 52 points at the half, the last time was against North Carolina A&T … Lanay Montgomery led WVU in points with a career high 23, matched her season high with 18 rebounds and had six blocks tonight … Montgomery is the second player in program history to get 20-plus points, grab 18-plus rebounds and five-plus blocks … Mountaineer Hall of Famer Georgeann Wells did it on Dec. 22, 1984, against Marshall … Montgomery is the fourth player to score at least 23 points and grab 18 rebounds, joining Wells (2x) and Olivia Bradley … Montgomery recorded her third double-double of the season, totaling 12 in her career … Teana Muldrow also had her third double-double of the year with 18 points and 13 rebounds … Muldrow and Montgomery are first Mountaineer duo to tally double-doubles in back-to-back games since Liz Repella and Takisha Granberry in 2008 … Chania Ray is on a 10-game streak with multiple assists (4) … Kristina King set a season high four assists, three blocks and matches her two steals … Muldrow matched her career high 4 assists … WVU is 393-165 at the WVU Coliseum and is 187-46 all-time at home … WVU is 101-7 at home against nonconference teams since 2002.