PITTSBURGH — Pitt bounced back from a tough three game skid with a solid, 78-42, win over Loyola (Md.) at the Petersen Events Center Wednesday night.
The Panthers (6-3) improve to 8-0 in the series over the Greyhounds (4-6) and earn their first win over them since 2016. The win is also the first for the Panthers since they defeated the VCU Rams on Nov. 25 and puts them back on track going forward for the last two non-conference games.
“Obviously whenever you come off losing three games, you really try to pinpoint, go to practice to try about what things we have to clear up,” Panthers head coach Lance White said postgame. “I thought on the defensive end, keeping people in front of us and guarding the post play better. I thought we played with much more energy than we had those last couple of games. Especially to be able to go and attack. It’s always good and it allows your kids to be able to say what we’re doing is working. We just have to stick with it and keep moving a long.”
Neither team shot the ball well in the first quarter, with Pitt shooting 6-for-19 and Loyola shooting 1-for-15 from the field, giving Pitt just a 12-7 lead. Pitt picked it up in the second quarter, shooting 64.3% from the floor and taking a 32-14 lead into halftime.
The Panthers continued their solid play in the second half. They shot 17-for-26, 65.4% from the field and 7-for-10 from 3-point range, outscoring the Greyhounds 46-28.
Loyola struggled throughout the game to score. They shot a poor 10-for-56, 17.9% from the floor in the game, including 4-for-33 from within two-point range. This all occurred despite the fact that Loyola grabbed 21 offensive rebounds in the game and out rebounded Pitt, 39-37.
— Pitt Basketball (@Pitt_WBB) December 7, 2022
Pitt shot 32-for-59, 54.2% from the field, the second best percentage in a game this season.
First-year guard Avery Strickland starred for the Panthers against the Greyhounds. She scored a season-high 17 points on 7-for-8 shooting from the field and 3-for-4 from behind the arc.
Strickland just said that she played in the offense and kept shooting once she got in rhythm. She also said that the intensity of college basketball is something she is still adjusting to.
“I would just say physically and mentally it’s a different ball game,” Strickland said on her first season with Pitt. “Every day you’ve got to show up. Every practice you’ve got to show up. Every day is a battle and that’s something I’ve learned truly. We just need to keep being consistent and we’ll be doing good.”
5-5 from beyond the arc in the 3rd quarter💯 pic.twitter.com/gyWS5TF5LC
— Pitt Basketball (@Pitt_WBB) December 8, 2022
Junior forward Gabby Hutcherson scored a season-high 12 point on 5-for-9 shooting from the floor and 2-for-3 from 3-point range.
First-year guard Marley Washentiz made her first start this season, logging in a team high 25 minutes and a season-high five assists in the win.
Pitt continues their four game homestand with a matchup against Ball State on Sunday, Dec. 11 at 12 p.m.