Bob Huggins, West Virginia

West Virginia basketball coach Bob Huggins talks about his team's 87-44 victory over Marist in the opening game of the Old Spice Classic at ESPN's Wide World of Sports in Lake Buena Vista. (CHRIS HAYS/ORLANDO SENTINEL / November 22, 2012)

LAKE BUENA VISTA — West Virginia opened up the Old Spice Classic basketball tournament at ESPN's Wide World of Sports on Thursday with a bit of a Thanksgiving Day massacre, rolling little Marist College of Poughkeepsie, N.Y., 87-44.

West Virginia, which suffered a similar sort of massacre itself in getting trounced by No. 17 Gonzaga in its season opener on the road at Spokane, Wash., 10 days ago, has another shot at the Zags should both teams continue the same course toward Sunday's Old Spice title game.

West Virginia (1-1) will face Davidson (2-2) in one semifinal game at 12:30 p.m., Friday. Davidson finally pulled away to defeat Vanderbilt in Thursday's other early game 75-62.

In Thursday's night-time doubleheader, No. 17 Gonzaga fought off a pesky Clemson squad 57-49, and  Oklahoma jumped out to a 22-6 lead and fought off a few UTEP surges to keep the Miners at bay. UTEP got within four late, but OU pulled it out 68-61. The Sooners will face Gonzaga in Friday's other semifinal at 7:30 p.m. All games are on ESPN2. 

As for seeing Gonzaga (4-0) again, Mountaineers coach Bob Huggins didn't sound as if that was necessarily his idea of a good time.

"Want me to tell you the truth? When I was growing up, if somebody beat my [behind], they'd beat my [behind] the next day and then the next day and then the next day," Huggins said. "We gotta worry about tomorrow."

It was difficult to see what kind of improvement his team had made since the Gonzaga rout during the Mountaineers game against an obviously out-manned Marist (1-3) squad, but Huggins did see things with which he was pleased.

"Little bit of difference in the caliber of opponent," Huggins said, "but we're better. We passed the ball better and we got the ball reversed a lot better and I thought our on-the-ball pressure was a lot better.

"We're playing so many guys that it takes a little while. We need to play some games. We'll play these three and then go home and play a couple and I think, by then, we can get everything sorted out."

West Virginia was able to rotate plenty of players on Thursday, and four reserve players got into double digits, including usual starter Aaric Murray, who had 10 points despite not playing in the first half. Murray overslept and was late to a team practice, so he sat out the first 20 minutes.

"He showed up late, and we just don't do that," Huggins said of Murray.

Freshman Eron Harris led the way with 15 points off the bench on 7-of-8 shooting, while fellow freshman Terry Henderson had 14 points and six rebounds, Jabarie Hinds had 11 points and Matt Humphrey added 10. WVU, led by Deniz Kilicli's seven rebounds, had a 41-31 advantage on the boards, as well.

"Terry's played well. Terry is very quickly working his way into the rotation. As everybody can see, Eron's a talented guy. He can do some things," Huggins said of his two true freshmen. "It's just a matter of them understanding a little bit better what needs to go on."

Huggins said the 10-day layoff since the blowout loss to Gonzaga was useful in working on some things.

"It wasn't bad for us. Don't get me wrong, it kills me to get beat like that, but we learned a lot of things," Huggins said. "I think they [his players] learned a lot of things coming back … that they had a lot of things to fix."

Marist, a member of the host Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference, the annual host conference for the sixth year tournament, was led by Isaiah Morton's 10 points and Adam Kemp had nine rebounds.

Davidson 75, Vanderbilt 62

Davidson's ball movement allowed the Wildcats good looks at the basket all day against Vandy. The Wildcats shot 50 percent for the game, including 43 percent from 3-point range (9-for-21). De'Mon Brooks led the way with 19 points and Nik Cochran, who hit all four of his 3-point attempts, and Jake Cohen added 14 apiece. Vandy's Kedren Johnson led all players with 28 points, hitting 4-of-6 3-pointers.

Davidson coach Bob McKillop said he was concerned about his match-up problems underneath with West Virignia's big men in Friday's game.

“They are a Big 12 team who is going to be physical, athletic. Historically they’re as tough and well schooled as we’re going to face," McKillop said. "They rebound ferociously. We’ll probably be doing rebounding drills in the hallway at the hotel  tonight just in preparation.”