PITT BEAST CINCINNATI, SETS UP UCONN SHOWDOWN
February 15, 2009
The Pittsburgh Panthers took care of business on Saturday afternoon, beating the Cincinnati Bearcats 85-69 at the Peterson Events Center. In doing so, Pitt matched a school record by shooting 67.4% from the field and guarantees that their meeting with UConn on Big Monday will be a battle of top 5 teams.
Pitt had five players in double figures, led by Sam Young's 18 points. DeJuan Blair added 17, Jermaine Dixon 14, Gilbert Brown 12 and Levance Fields added 11 points while orchestrating another flawless floor game, handing out 13 assists without turning the ball over. As a team, Pitt was credited with 21 assist on their 31 made field goals and had just six team turnovers.
While the Pitt defense allowed UC to shoot 52% themselves, Pitt did an excellent job on the two Bearcat stars, Deonta Vaughn and Yancy Gates. Vaughn was hounded by the JUCO transfer Dixon and sophomore guard Brad Wanamaker the entire game and finished with just nine points in 37 minutes. Gates was just 2-8 from the field, scoring 4 points in 28 minutes.
Pitt's 6'7 Blair, the nation's leading offensive rebounder, was quiet on the boards today as Cincinnati did a good job limiting second chance opportunities, of course, when a team missed just 15 shots the ENTIRE game, there aren't many rebounds available, so next time, Mick Cronin would probably prefer his players to make Pitt miss AND prevent the offensive rebounds.
Pitt will now turn around quickly and head to Connecticut for Monday's titanic Big East showdown. It should be a good one!
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