No. 8 Hilltoppers Run Away From D&E, 90-63
WEST LIBERTY, W.Va. – The No. 8-ranked West Liberty men's basketball team shot over 50 percent from the floor and drained 14 3-point field goals here Wednesday in running away to a 90-63 win against Davis & Elkins at the McDonnell Center.
Pat Robinson and Bryce Butler led Coach Ben Howlett's Hilltoppers (17-2, 11-2) with 17 points each while second-year freshman guard Zach Rasile ripped the nets with a WLU season-high 5 3-point bombs as West Liberty notched its 15th double-digit victory of the season.
The scrappy Senators (6-12, 4-9) kept things close for most of the first half, forcing the Hilltoppers to settle for a 40-32 advantage after the first 20 minutes, but WLU found another gear when play resumed and left the outgunned hosts in the dust.
A pull-up jumper by Butler and a Viktor Kovacevic 3-point bomb pushed the margin to 45-32 a minute into the second half. It never dropped below double-digits again.
The lead hit 20 points, 62-42, just before the under-10 media timeout when Robinson picked off a pass and found Butler underneath for a transition layup. Three minutes later, Rasile drained his fourth "triple" of the night for a 74-42 Hilltopper lead and the Mountain East Conference front-runners coasted across the finish line.
Rasile backed Robinson and Butler with 16 points, fueled by a 5-for-6 showing from behind the arc in what turned into something of a "three-party" for the visitors.
Led by Rasile's 5 bonus bombs, nine Hilltoppers made at least one 3-pointer and West Liberty went 14-of-30 from the 3-point arc. Malik McKinney was the only other double-figure scorer for West Liberty with 10 points.
Davis & Elkins got a game-high 27 points from Sam Rolle IV. Ben Gilliam added 13 in a losing cause.