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Pitt Basketball

Pitt Earns Gutsy 84-82 Road Win Over Syracuse to Advance to 2-0 in ACC

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SYRACUSE, N.Y. — Jeff Capel’s Pitt Panthers have been dreaming of an orange Christmas.

On Tuesday night, the Panthers fought off a ferocious 20-point comeback from Syracuse, earning a stop on the last possession of the ballgame as former Pitt commit and Syracuse star freshman Judah Mintz missed a dramatic potential game-tying jumper.

The Panthers defense stepped up in the final moments, earning the team its second ACC win of the year and its eighth victory in its last nine games.

Pitt looked to its veterans for their leadership and outside shooting prowess from the very start in a loud environment, as Nelly Cummings hushed the crowd with four first-half threes, propelling the battle-ready Panthers to an eight-point lead at the break.

In the second half, Cummings added two more threes to finish with 22 points and sink the Orange. Wing-forward Blake Hinson led Pitt with his fourth double-double performance of the year, adding 25 points and 13 rebounds.

As big man John Hugley did not play and starting five-man Federiko Federiko spent extended time on the bench due to foul trouble, Hinson filled in defensively down low, attacking Syracuse’s bigs and using his physical frame to hold the lead for Pitt.

With just over five minutes to go, Federiko fouled out with seven points and five rebounds, leaving rookie Jorge Diaz-Graham and Hinson as the sole forwards in for the Panthers.

Diaz-Graham turned in a crucial performance for Pitt, hitting two big free throws late and grabbing an offensive rebound to add on to his six-point, three-rebound first-half showing.

The Panthers held off multiple Syracuse runs led by the two-time reigning ACC Rookie of the Week Mintz. After Mintz cut the Panther lead to seven with just over two minutes left on a mid-range jumper, the Orange came down the floor and earned a huge three-pointer from veteran Joe Girard to cut Pitt’s lead to four, its smallest of the half.

Pitt then held strong in the final moments, heading home with a 9-4 record.

Pitt stuck to its game plan from the very start, decimating the Orange’s infamous 2-3 zone with a three-point barrage led by Nelly Cummings’ four first-half three pointers. On the night, Pitt shot a strong 41% from three-point range, hitting 13 of its 32 attempts.

Pitt’s Jamarius Burton and Greg Elliott combined for 21 points, eight assists, and 12 rebounds in solid showings as well.

Pitt (9-4) now has ten days off until its next game on Dec. 30 at home against 8-4 North Carolina.

Sandy Schall, Coldwell Banker
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RonDon
RonDon
1 month ago

Pitt played awful at the end and the refs were terrible in helping Cuse get back in it. I hate Judah Mintz even more now.

Pitt Fan Illinois
Pitt Fan Illinois
1 month ago

A classic time management lesson for players. Let’s hope they remember to run the lock when up by 16. At 1min left in tonight’s game, they easily should have been in the lockeroom

drw
drw
1 month ago

Great point, another poor coaching job by Chapel, allowing Syracuse to take 2 minutes off the clock bye- rolling ball up to half-travellinghalf-court. One play a Syracuse guard rolled the ball up the court and Pitt didn’t protest travelliing

Pitt Fan Illinois
Pitt Fan Illinois
1 month ago
Reply to  drw

These are basketball “2nd level” fairly fundamental coach strategies. It is what it is.

What it did show…our boys can play. Lots of players off bench, many leaders.. The after game videos show the comradaire. Merry Christmas

Rob Radich
Rob Radich
1 month ago

“Comradaire” Hope someone gets you Hooked on Phonics for Xmas.

Burton Tee
Burton Tee
1 month ago

So many turnovers and bad, sloppy play in the second half.

They need to clean it up.

Joe Schmo
Joe Schmo
1 month ago

Mintz is the truth. Hopefully he comes back through the portal next yr. Lol

Jane
Jane
1 month ago

Glad I went to bed…..refs were homers!

Pittband
Pittband
1 month ago

Missed the game thought it was today. Saw them against North Florida. If you’re staying away from the Pete because of the press, you are missing a good team. The press will hop on board or it won’t but this is a good team and it will get better. Hinson is the real deal. A lot teams are kicking themselves because they looked at his history and not the player.

TJ
TJ
1 month ago

wow .. nice win. anyone know where to watch a replay. i tried espn watch (with subscription and tv provider) but it said I was not authorized to view this content. i guess espnU is not included in a +subscription ?

Joe
Joe
1 month ago

Good test for the team. Important they learn how to play together on the road against a quality team.

Eric payne
Eric payne
1 month ago

Vince Lombardi once said ” fatigue makes cowards of us all”. That was a tired team coming down the stretch. Four of the starting five played more than 30 minuutes. Tired teams make mistakes. Inspite of that,, they found a way to win. Great win for a TOUGH team. H2P.

Rob Radich
Rob Radich
1 month ago
Reply to  Eric payne

“Inspite”. Ok. Can always count on you to sprinkle something moronic in every post.

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