West Virginia Women's Basketball 2014 NCAA Tournament Capsule

West Virginia Mountaineers
Big 12 (29-4, 16-2)


West Virginia women’s basketball has transitioned very nicely in year two of its membership in the Big 12 Conference. Head Coach Mike Carey has an extremely battle tested, experienced team that has parlayed itself into the conversation as a threat to make a run to the Final Four in Nashville.

Big Wins: 1/04 at Oklahoma State (71-67), 1/12 Texas (56-49), 3/2 at Baylor (71-69)
Bad Losses: 11/8 Ohio State (61-70), 1/08 Baylor (62-78), 1/25 at Texas (63-66)
Coach: Mike Carey (13 seasons)

Why They Can Surprise:
The experience, with two juniors and two seniors in the starting lineup, is absolutely invaluable for the Mountaineers heading into the NCAA Tournament. West Virginia’s ability to score at a more proficient rate this year is also going to be huge in the postseason. The Mountaineers are averaging consistently over 70 points per game and when they play higher seeded teams as they get deeper in the tournament that will give them an outstanding chance to win. The ability to lock down teams defensively has long been a staple of the West Virginia program and this year is no different. The Mountaineers have the ability to dominate teams at both ends of the court and should have the confidence to play with anyone in the postseason.

Why They Can Disappoint:
This team can disappoint if they have a game like the loss at Texas where players like Cristal Caldwell and especially Asya Bussie got into foul trouble. If this happened against a team with skilled post players, that would put a ton of stress on the Mountaineer bench. West Virginia also could possibly disappoint if they allow a player go off for a career type of game similar to what Baylor’s Odyssey Sims did in Morgantown earlier this year when she scored 48 points in a 78-62 win for the Bears.

Probable Starters:
Bria Holmes, Sophomore, Guard, 15.1 ppg, 1.6 apg
Linda Stepney, Junior, Guard, 5.0 ppg, 3.2 apg
Christal Caldwell, Senior, Guard, 12.2 ppg, 1.2 apg, 4.4 rpg
Averee Fields, Junior, Forward, 7.5 ppg, 5.0 rpg
Asya Bussie, Senior, Center, 13.0 ppg, 7.6 rpg, 2.0 bpg

Key Roleplayers:
Taylor Palmer, Senior, Guard, 10.1 ppg, 1.2 apg
Brooke Hampton, Senior, Guard, 3.5 ppg, 2.8 apg
Crystal Leary, Junior, Forward, 3.0 ppg, 3.8 rpg
Jess Harlee, Senior, Forward, 2.9 ppg, 3.0 rpg

By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 74.4 (49th in nation, 3rd in conference)
Scoring Defense: 57.8 (20, 2)
Field-Goal Percentage: 43.5 (49, 4)
Field-Goal Defense: 35.1 (11, 2)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 6.1 (104, 4)
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 33.4 (91, 5)
Free-Throw Percentage: 68.8 (178, 6)
Rebound Margin: 6.8 (40, 3)
Assists Per Game: 14.8 (88, 3)
Turnovers Per Game: 14.3 (64, 4)

Recent Postseason Appearances:
2013    NCAA    Round of 64 loss to Delaware
2012    NCAA    Round of 64 win over Texas
2012    NCAA    Round of 32 loss to Stanford
2008    NCAA    Round of 64 win over New Mexico
2011    NCAA    Round of 64 win over Houston
2011    NCAA    Round of 32 win loss to Baylor
2010    NCAA    Round of 64 win over Lamar
2010    NCAA    Round of 32 loss to San Diego State
2009    NIT        First Round win over Coppin State
2009    NIT        Second Round loss to St. Bonaventure
2008    NCAA    Round of 32 loss to Vanderbilt
2007    NCAA    Round of 64 win over Xavier
2007    NCAA    Round of 32 loss to LSU

*all team stats through 3/6


See All Women’s Basketball Postseason Capsules