"He destroyed us,'' Huggins said of Woodall. "He absolutely destroyed us.''
At the start, though, this appeared like anything but a night in which none of the bounces or breaks would go WVU's way. In fact, the Mountaineers made their first four shots, got 3-pointers from Jabarie Hinds and Bryant and led 17-9.
The game then settled into a snoozer for a good 10 minutes, though, when Pitt went without a point for a stretch of nearly six minutes and WVU couldn't score a field goal for more than seven and a crowd of 13,032 had trouble staying interested.
But then Woodall capped a 17-6 Pitt run with a 3-pointer to give the Panthers their first lead at 26-23. Then his 3 just ahead of the buzzer made it 33-29 at the half. And in the second half, the Panthers extended the lead to as much as 10.
And again, Huggins couldn't even yell at his players right. He screamed at Bryant over defensive assignments during a dead ball and official Sean Corbin thought he was screaming at him and gave him a technical.
In the end, though, that didn't hurt much. Pitt got only one point out of it and WVU began clawing back. It got as close as 56-54 and gave Jones an open look at a 3-pointer for the lead. He air-balled it, though, and soon the margin was back up to 63-56 with 31/2 minutes to play. The Mountaineers never again got within one possession.
Bryant added 14 points for WVU, Deniz Kilicli 12 and Hinds 10. But they were not easy points. Jones was also just 7-for-16 shooting and missed all five of his 3-pointers, while Bryant shot nothing but 3s (2-for-7). In all, after Hinds and Bryant hit those first two 3-pointers they attempted, WVU missed 17 of 19 the rest of the game
But again, that just seems to be the way things go when a team is mired in a slump. Even injuries are working against WVU. Kevin Noreen, the only experienced backup to Kilicli in the middle, broke his ankle in the first half.
All in all, it's probably good that West Virginia has nearly a week off until Sunday's game at Providence. Huggins will give his team two days off and then go from there.
"They're probably as tired of me as I am of them,'' Huggins said. "So two days off will be pretty good.''
Reach Dave Hickman at 304-348-1734 or dphickm...@aol.com.