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Pitt comes back to beat Clemson 83-78 in overtime

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Pitt comes from behind and steals a win on the road 83-78.

Justin K. Aller

Had 'em all the way folks.

Pitt's Josh Newkirk hit a shot with .1 on the clock to tie the game against a hungry Clemson team in front of a raucous home crowd at LittleJohn Coliseum. Pitt trailed at halftime by nine, but had the game as a back and forth affair throughout much of the second half with a rugged comeback effort. Lamar Patterson led the way for the Panthers with another outstanding performance of 30 points, 7 rebounds, and 7 assists. Pitt survived an 11 point deficit in the second half, and forced overtime in improbable fashion after a lengthy review of Newkirk's desperation jumper.

Pitt started hot in the first half forcing numerous turnovers leading to points, but Clemson's hot shooting, and Pitt's poor shooting in the paint led to a quick Clemson lead that extended throughout most of the contest.  KJ McDaniels played like a man possessed in Clemson's senior day, and finished with a strong showing of 24 points, 4 rebounds, and 4 assists.

Pitt found themselves down 67-65 with under 3 seconds, and a botched in-bounds play led to a loose ball ending up in the hands of Josh Newkirk. Newkirk hesitated just enough to make things interesting for a Pitt team that did not need another heartbreak. After a long deliberation by the officials they ruled in Pitt's favor, and they quickly asserted control in the overtime period.

Pitt saw another double double from Talib Zanna as he finished with 10 points and 10 rebounds, and Cam Wright chipped in with 16 points and 5 assists, while Josh Newkirk finished with just four points, but the two biggest of the contest.  With the win, the Panthers move to 23-8 overall and 11-7 in the league.  The win keeps Pitt on the right side of the bubble as they turn their attention to the ACC tournament in Greensboro this week.

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