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Charleston to host WVU, UCLA Saturday in finals

Charleston Gazette photo by The Associated Press Temple’s Erica Covile (left) and West Virginia’s Teana Muldrow scramble for a loose ball.
Charleston Gazette photo by The Associated Press
Temple’s Erica Covile (left) and West Virginia’s Teana Muldrow scramble for a loose ball.

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — The Women’s National Invitation Tournament championship game is coming to Charleston. West Virginia saw to that Wednesday night.

The first step, actually, was taken before a semifinal game with Temple began when a crowd of 3,025 came to the Coliseum. That made it clear to WNIT officials that West Virginia was the place to play the title game.

Then Lanay Montgomery, Bria Holmes, Averee Fields and Crystal Leary took care of the rest.

Montgomery had a stunning 24 rebounds and eight blocked shots, Holmes and Fields combined for 42 points and Leary made the steal that gave the Mountaineers a chance. Eventually they put away the Owls 66-58 in overtime to reach the title game.

West Virginia (23-14) will now face UCLA (18-18) in the WNIT championship game. UCLA beat Michigan 69-65 in Wednesday’s other semifinal.

The game will be played at 3 p.m. Saturday at the Charleston Civic Center. WVU won the right to host the game by drawing the best attendance numbers in the tournament, but can’t host the game at the Coliseum because of an NCAA gymnastics regional that day…

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