Men's Basketball Dropped by #5/5 Pitt, 82-58

Box Score (PDF)

PITTSBURGH -The Penn men's basketball team was looking good with about seven minutes left in the first half Saturday night against Pitt at the Panthers' Petersen Events Center. A pair of Miles Cartwright three-pointers had been the catalyst to a 14-6 Quaker run that had cut a 15-4 deficit to 21-18.

Fifth-ranked Pitt never panicked; instead, the Panthers were ruthlessly efficient at both ends of the floor for the remainder of the break, and used a 15-0 run that essentially put this game away. The final score was 82-58.

Penn fell to 2-3 with the loss. Pitt improved to 7-0 with the win, and extended to 52 its home winning streak against non-conference opponents. The Panthers have won 101 of their last 102 home games against non-conference foes.

Pitt scored the game's first nine points and was up 15-4 after eight minutes. However, things may have come a little too easily for the Panthers, and when they softened up Penn took advantage. Jack Eggleston hit a three-pointer, and then Fran Dougherty matched a Gary McGhee layup with a bucket of his own. Cartwright then sandwiched a pair of treys around his own foul shot and an Eggleston layup, and suddenly the score was 21-18 and the sleepy Pitt crowd of 10,594 was stirred to nervousness.

There was nothing flashy about Pitt's first or last run in theopening half -- if there was a highlight, it came when Ashton Gibbs fed a leaping Gilbert Brown for an alley-oop that wasn't rim-rattling or anything. But that was typical of the entire half, one in which Pitt went a fairly pedestrian 13-of-20 from the field and made just two of its 10 three-point shots. That said, Pitt had nine offensive rebounds and got 11 foul shots in the opening 20 minutes, making eight of them. For the half, Pitt had 16 second-chance points (to just three for Penn) and held a 12-1 advantage in points off turnovers.

Penn had a couple of nice offensive possessions to start the second half in tryingto get back into the game, but Pitt quickened its pace offensively and again ratcheted up the defensive pressure, and the Panthers' lead ballooned past the 20-point mark by the first media timeout (49-28) and neared 30 by the second media timeout (60-31).

Cartwright finished the game with 22 points, a career high, as he shot 7-of-8 from the field including 3-of-4 from beyond the arc. Eggleston finished with 16 points and had a team-high seven rebounds, while Zack Rosen had 11 points and a game-high eight assists.

Ashton Gibbs led a balanced Pitt scoring attack with 12 points, while Dante Taylor and J.J. Moore had 11 apiece. Brown scored nine points and had seven rebounds, while Brad Wanamaker and Travon Woodall had six assists each.

Penn will return to action Tuesday night, hosting UMBC at 7 p.m. at The Palestra.

Download: penn-pitt.pdf