Konate helps No. 15 West Virginia beat Kansas State 89-51

West Virginia forward Sagaba Konate (50) dunks during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game against Kansas State, Saturday, Feb. 3, 2018, in Morgantown, W.Va. West Virginia defeated Kansas State 89-51. (AP Photo/Raymond Thompson)

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. (AP) – Sagaba Konate scored 19 points and No. 15 West Virginia ended a three-game losing streak, beating Kansas State 89-51 on Saturday.

James “Beetle” Bolden added 13 points in his first career start, Teddy Allen had 12 points off the bench and Wes Harris had 10 for West Virginia (17-6, 6-5 Big 12).

Dean Wade scored 17 points and Xavier Sneed had 16 for Kansas State (16-7, 5-5).

The Wildcats never led, were held to their lowest scoring output of the season and had more turnovers (15) than field goals (14).

West Virginia coach Bob Huggins had been critical of his team for not guarding better in a 93-77 loss Wednesday at Iowa State, the most points the Mountaineers have allowed in a Big 12 game.

Things improved significantly Saturday.

West Virginia’s pressure defense was effective and the Mountaineers got a rare win after holding a double-digit lead over the past month. West Virginia has had such leads in five of its last seven games but has won just twice.

Konate took advantage of the Big 12’s worst rebounding team. Over a 1:15 stretch late in the game, the 6-foot-8 sophomore scored off a rebound, made two free throws and threw down a dunk as part of a 13-0.

BIG PICTURE

West Virginia: The Mountaineers shot 61 percent (14 of 23) from the floor after halftime in beating Kansas State for the eighth time in their last nine meetings. They didn’t look like the stumbling squad that struggled to a 3-5 record in January after rising to the No. 2 ranking in the AP Top 25 on Jan. 8.

Kansas State: The Wildcats made one basket over a 13-minute stretch spanning both halves, allowing West Virginia to take command. Kansas State has lost two straight after winning four in a row.

UP NEXT

Kansas State: Plays at Texas on Wednesday

West Virginia: Looks for its first regular-season sweep of Oklahoma after beating the Sooners 89-76 on Jan. 6 in Morgantown. The game at No. 12 Oklahoma is Monday night.

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