12-5-12 Capital Classic matches WVU and Marshall

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Both Mountaineer fans and Herd fans are ready for some Capital Classic basketball action Wednesday night at the Charleston Civic Center.

This year’s Capital Classic between the Marshall Thundering Herd and the West Virginia Mountaineers is taking place earlier than in years past. Normally the games have been played in January.

Mountaineer head basketball coach Bob Huggins believes these games are being played at the right time.

“I think it’s at the right time,” said Huggins. “I don’t think it should be played in the conference season.”

Huggins said by having these games before conference play prevent the teams from getting beat up just before a big conference game.

“It’s a great game,” said Huggins. “It’s a great game and it’s a great rivalry.”

Crystal Leary produced a double-double off the bench and West Virginia’s reserves outscored its starters in a 64-48 victory in the women’s game Tuesday night.

Leary finished with 12 points, 11 rebounds and five steals in 32 minutes, while fellow reserve Bria Holmes scored 13 of her game-high 15 points in the first half. A crowd of 2,606 saw the Mountaineers (5-2) win their eighth straight game in the series.

“Crystal plays hard and she plays hard every game,” West Virginia coach Mike Carey said. “I told her after the game I wish I could get everybody to play as hard as her.

Marshall (4-4) missed a chance to keep the game closer by missing 7-of-8 first-half free throws. The Herd finished 5-of-17 from the foul line.

WVU’s starting center Ayana Dunning contributed 13 points and six rebounds, but played only 16 minutes while saddled with foul trouble. Taylor Palmer chipped in seven points and Averee Fields added six points and seven rebounds, helping WVU to a 48-41 edge on the boards

Leandra King was the only double-figures scorer for the Herd with 10 points.

The men’s game is scheduled to get started at 7:30 p.m.

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