PITTSBURGH — Cassidy Walsh torched her previous career high, scoring 21 points as Pitt rocked New Orleans, 90-38 on Friday afternoon to improve to 1-1 on the season and earn new head coach Lance White his first victory.
Walsh’s big day was part of a lights-out shooting game for the Panthers. Pitt shot 49.3 percent from the floor and 42.9 percent from 3-point range.
Walsh hit 8 of her 13, blowing past her previous career high, which was 12 points. The senior guard also had five assists.
“I think all year long she has had a great confidence and needy of what we want to be about” White said. “She is playing with a lot of confidence and hustle.”
Alayna Gribble had 17 points on 6 of 11, all but one from 3-point range. Kyla Nelson was 4 of 5 for 12 points and also took all of her shots from beyond the arc. Senior point guard Aysia Bugg was held to four points, but had eight assists.
Inside, Danielle Garven cleaned up, with eight rebounds, four of them on the offensive glass, and 15 points on 7 of 11 shooting.
The 90 total points represented the largest total for the Panthers against a Division I opponent since Dec. 30, 2014, when the Panthers scored 93 in a win over Delaware State.
“I really though we would take another big step,” White said. “I think we are playing more confidently with each other, understanding a little more about what I want. Now the kids really know where each other are. Being able to hit some shots obviously helps.”
Ismini Prapa, a first-year guard and native of Athens, Greece earned the first playing time of her career, scoring two points, grabbing two rebounds and dishing out an assist in 11 minutes, all in the second half.
“I really though she had a good bounce about her,” White said. “Obviously, there are some things in the international game that you can’t do against bigger, stronger athletes, and I thought she had a couple turnovers where she will learn to make some of those passes.”