**Nova-WVU coverage: For game recap and audio of Villanova press conference, click HERE.**
**Coverage reminder: Philahoops.com will be heading to Hagan Arena from here to cover tonight’s St. Joe’s-UMass game.**
Pennsbury’s Pepper wants to stay at WVU
By AARON BRACY
PHILADELPHIA — Sophomore guard Dalton Pepper told Philahoops.com he wants to stay at West Virginia following Saturday’s loss to Villanova.
A graduate of nearby Pennsbury High, Pepper has seen inconsistent playing time this season. There have been Internet whispers that he was considering transferring. So we went right to the source.
Pepper, who scored nine points on Saturday, said he was happy playing for the Mountaineers.
“I like it a lot here,” he told Philahoops.com exclusively. “Next year I should be able to take the starting role and play 30 minutes per game.”
Here is the audio from the Pepper interview:
For the rest of the story, please click on the “View full article” link below.
At 6-foot-5, 230 pounds, Pepper clearly has the size to play at the Big East level. But his minutes have been spotty, at best, this season under coach Bob Huggins at WVU.
He played at least 10 minutes in 8 of the Mountaineers’ first 10 games, then played less than 10 in 6 of the next 9. Recently, he’s been getting more minutes, including 19 against the Wildcats on Saturday.
“(At the) beginning of the season I was getting a lot of minutes,” he said. “During the middle of the season I guess I wasn’t playing well enough or hitting enough shots.”
But he’s seen 21, 22, 12 and 19 minutes, respectively, in his last four games.
“The last four games have been building my confidence up,” he said.
Against Villanova, Pepper was 0-for-4 from the field, including 0-for-3 from the arc, in nine first-half minutes, but made all three of his shots – all 3-pointers – after halftime to finish with nine points.
Despite his hot hand, Huggins pulled Pepper during the final stretch and all he could do was watch the outcome develop from the bench.
“It’s tough losing by this much, especially in your hometown,” he said.
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