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Femi Odukale Shines, Leads Pitt Past Jacksonville, 64-55



PITTSBURGH — Just days after taking down St. John’s in dramatic fashion, Pitt came back home and won its second straight game, this time knocking off Jacksonville at the Petersen Events Center by a score of 64-55.

After a back-and-forth affair in the first half, the Panthers took control in the second frame with a 20-3 run that propelled them into the lead which they would eventually build as high as 17 points.

Led by Femi Odukale, Jamarius Burton, and Mo Gueye, Pitt closed out the victory down the stretch by shooting 46% from the field in the second half.

Other than Odukale, Burton, and Gueye, the rest of the team combined for just 9 points. Big man John Hugley once again found himself in foul trouble early on, but picked up his production in the second half, finishing the game with 8 points and 9 rebounds.

Odukale looked like a completely different player in the win, scoring a season-high 28 points on 9-for-13 shooting. Odukale, who was shooting just 26% from three-point range coming into this one, drained a season-high 5 three-pointers on 7 attempts in the win.

Pitt’s Mo Gueye followed up his 15-point performance against St. John’s with another strong outing on Tuesday. Gueye went 6 for 10 from the floor and finished with 15 points, while also grabbing  a team-high 12 rebounds. The forward also delivered some highlight plays, ignited the Panthers’ home crowd with multiple electrifying dunks and blocked shots.

For Jacksonville, Kevion Nolan led the way with 22, going 7 for 14 from the field, and hitting 6 of his 11 three-point attempts.

With the in, the Panthers improve to 5-7. Pitt’s next game comes on Tuesday, Dec. 28, when it will take on Notre Dame at the Petersen Events Center. That game will tip off at 8 p.m. on ESPN2.

Sandy Schall, Coldwell Banker
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