After a 19-point loss to West Virginia last season, the expectation Saturday was that the 2018 rendition of the Backyard Brawl would be far different for the Pitt women’s basketball team. After all, the Panthers were riding a four-game win streak – three of which came over top-120 RPI opponents – and had flashed noticeable signs of improvement within a rejuvenated culture under first-year coach Lance White.
With the arrow seemingly pointed upward, Pitt garnering its first win over the Lady Mountaineers since 2011 didn’t seem completely out of the question.
So we thought.
In actuality, it was the opposite. West Virginia cruised to a 77-43 victory – nearly doubling last year’s win margin – to hand Pitt its fifth loss of the season. The Panthers were limited to 29 percent shooting from the field (14-49), 27 percent from beyond the arc (3-11) and committed 27 turnovers.
West Virginia – improving to 5-2 in the win – had its way on the offensive end on 47 percent shooting (27-58) from the field. Tynice Martin led all scorers with 26 points, while Naomi Davenport added 18 points and Kyrse Gondrezick chipped in 11.
For Pitt, Cara Judkins was the only player to score in double figures with 12 points and nine rebounds. Cassidy Walsh finished with nine points on 3-for-10 shooting. Jasmine Whitney was held scoreless.
The Panthers will be back in action on Dec. 18th against UNC Wilmington at the Petersen Events Center.