The season has been a struggle for the young St. John's Red Storm men's basketball team (8-11, 2-6). Steve Lavin's bunch has had to learn on the fly in the brutal Big East Conference and Wednesday night won't be any different. West Virginia (15-5, 5-2) comes to New York sitting in fine position to make the NCAA Tournament again under Bob Huggins. The Mountaineers have won three in a row including an overtime thriller against Cincinnati a few nights ago.
Conversely, St. John's is really scuffling right now, losers of four in a row and six of its last seven. The team has been non-competitive against the good Big East teams except for the last second win against the Bearcats a few weeks ago. After tonight, the Red Storm will get a short break from the conference schedule. The bad news? They're traveling to Cameron Indoor Stadium to take on No. 6 Duke.
If St. John's has any chance to pull off the upset it needs to play legitimate defense. The Mountaineers score more than 75 points per game and are led by senior forward Kevin Jones who's one of the best players in the nation. He averages over 20 points and 11 rebounds per contest.
The burden mostly falls on the broad shoulders of Moe Harkless and D'Angelo Harrison to keep the Johnnies in the game. Harkless will need to be a presence inside and put that big body of his to good use.
The game can be seen on ESPNU and is slated for a 7 p.m. tip-off.
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