The No. 2 seed West Virginia women’s basketball team falls to No. 7 LSU, 76-67, in the second round of the 2014 NCAA women’s basketball tournament Tuesday in Baton Rouge.
West Virginia has failed to reach the Sweet 16 round of the NCAA women’s basketball tournament in 10 all-time appearances in the postseason tournament.
Asya Bussie scored a team-high 21 points in her final game as a Mountaineer, while Bria Holmes added 12 points and Christal Caldwell chipped in with 10.
Lisa Stepney and Taylor Palmer also added six points in the loss as the only other notable scorers for West Virginia.
Danielle Ballard led all scorers in the game with her 22-point performance for LSU. The sophomore guard also pulled down 15 rebounds and completed eight of her nine free throw attempts to help pull away from West Virginia.
Caldwell’s three-point jumper with 5:53 remaining in the opening half gave West Virginia the team’s first lead following the Lady Tigers running their lead to as much as eight points.
The Mountaineers were able to stretch a lead of their own to seven points in the second half, but four clutch free throw shots by guard Rina Hill made the difference for LSU’s first Sweet 16 appearance since 2008.
The stats at the end of the game were all in favor of the Lady Tigers, as West Virginia was outrebounded, 55-40, and shot well below 30% on three-point attempts during the game.
While the 2014 season ending with an early tournament exit, West Virginia had the best season in the history of the basketball program since its inception in 1974.
Holmes and Bussie were both selections to both the All-Big 12 First Team and all-defensive team, while Taylor Palmer was picked as the Big 12 Sixth Man winner for this season.
West Virginia will lose a great deal of talent heading into the 2014-2015 season after five seniors graduate and leave the basketball program this offseason.
Holmes, Averee Fields and Stepney will be the leading scorers entering next season for what might be best labeled as a rebuilding season following a 30-5 season, the most wins in a single season.
With so much accomplished this season, it will be tough to see a Mountaineer basketball team this good again very soon in Morgantown.
You can follow Chris at @_CBH_ as well as WVU Pros at @WVUPros on Twitter.