Photo credit: Hilltoppersports.com
By Cody Shook, Sports Editor
The West Liberty Hilltoppers will be taking on Fairmont State, the number two team in the nation, this Saturday at 4 p.m. in the ASRC. Coming into the game, West Liberty sits in the third spot in the nation and number two in the Mountain East Conference.
West Liberty currently has a 19-1 overall record and a 13-1 record in conference play. Fairmont State enters the game with a perfect 20-0 overall record and a 14-0 record in the MEC.
These two teams are facing off for the 170th time, with Fairmont holding the 94-75 advantage in the series. The last time these two teams faced off was two months ago; Fairmont State had a week to remember as they beat No. 4 Wheeling Jesuit and No. 1 West Liberty.
The Hilltoppers will try to avenge that loss this Saturday and improve their record against Fairmont in the Jim Crutchfield era to 28-4. This game has all of the makings of a high scoring affair as both teams are averaging over 98 points a game, which is good for second and third in the nation. When they met up in December, the defenses took over and neither team could surpass the 90 point mark as the game ended with an 86-81 score in Fairmont State’s favor.
Since the 2000-2001 season, the Hilltoppers are 215-33 in the ASRC with just five losses coming in their last 154 games, so they will look to improve their home record in front of a sell-out crowd this Saturday.
Last Saturday, West Liberty took on West Virginia State and took care of business handily with a 111-75 victory.
Senior guard Devin Hoehn is leading the team and climbing the ranks of all-time greats in West Liberty history. He is averaging 15.5 points a game along with 3 assists and just under 4 rebounds. Hoehn is currently 14th all-time on the scoring list with 1,684 points, which is 11 shy of 13th on the scoring list held by Chris Banal.
Hoehn is also second all-time in total 3-point field goals with 290, which is 84 behind current leader Seger Bonifant with 374.
Zac Grossenbacher is also climbing the ranks as he is in fifth place all-time in blocked shots with 155, which is only 11 away from fourth place.
The addition of junior guard Dan Monteroso has been huge this season as he is leading the team in scoring with 18.3 points a game, and he is second on the team in blocked shots and rebounds.
After this game, there will only be six games remaining with the biggest one coming on the last day of the regular season against Wheeling Jesuit on Feb. 25.
The game will start at 4 p.m. this Saturday in the ASRC against the undefeated Fairmont State Fighting Falcons, and if you’re unable to attend the game, you can catch all of the action on WLUTV-14.
You can also check out the live stream on hilltoppersports.com and be sure to follow the Trumpet on social media for live updates throughout the men’s and women’s games. Be sure to grab a copy of next week’s Trumpet for more game previews and player profiles.