In advance of the second round 2005 NCAA Tournament game in Cleveland between second-seeded Wake Forest and seventh-seeded West Virginia, Demon Deacons guard Chris Paul received all the buzz (and rightfully so). But by night’s end, he had been outplayed by a Mountaineers counterpart who shined near his hometown.
Olmstead Falls, OH, native Mike Gansey had a modest 10 points when Wake and West Virginia headed to overtime. He exploded in the two extra periods, finishing with 29 points as the Mountaineers shocked the Demon Deacons, 111–105. It was a three-pointer and two made free throws from Gansey that allowed the Mountaineers to pull away in the second OT.
It was arguably the biggest win of coach John Beilein’s career up to that point. The Mountaineers would eventually reach the Elite Eight before falling in a Regional Final thriller to Louisville.
After a five-year pro career spent in four different countries, Gansey took a front office job with the Cleveland Cavaliers. This past summer, he was named the Cavs’ director of D-League operations.
On Saturday night, West Virginia faces Beilein for the first time since he left Morgantown for Michigan following the 2006–2007 season. Mike Gansey profile