Pitt defeated the Virginia Cavaliers by a score of 88-76 Wednesday night. It took an extra frame to decide the outcome, but hot shooting in the overtime period led to a big lead that Virginia was not able to overcome. The win gives Pitt their first ACC win of the season.
The Panthers were led offensively by senior Jamel Artis, who finished with 24 points including six three-pointers. Mike Young chipped in 19, while Cam Johnson and Sheldon Jeter provided 16 each. It was Sheldon Jeter’s two overtime three pointers that provided Pitt with the separation over Virginia to pull away late. Jamel Artis hit one in the extra frame, and the Panthers cruised with foul shots the rest of the way.
It felt as though this game was heading down the same path as Saturday’s game against Notre Dame. Pitt held a three point lead late in regulation, and after a Mike Young miss, Virginia’s senior point guard London Perrantes calmly drilled a three pointer to send the game into overtime. The resilient Panthers asserted control in the overtime period to not let a second home loss happen.
Pitt played a solid game throughout, and held the lead for much of the contest. The Panthers appeared to take control late in the game, but poor foul shooting and turnovers kept the Cavaliers in the game. Pitt was 17-28 from the line, and committed 14 turnovers, with many coming down the stretch.
It was a hot shooting day all around for both teams. Nine players finished in double figures among the two teams, and it was more of an offensive minded game, which favored Pitt. Virginia shot 49.3% from the field, and made 8’s. Pitt had the upper hand however, as they shot 53.7% from the field. The difference was clearly Pitt’s three-point shooting, as Pitt went 13-21 (61.9%) from behind the arc. Pitt also held a commanding lead in the rebounding margin, 38-24.
We have learned early on in ACC play, that the games will be difficult and there is a ton of parity in the league. We are less than a week into ACC play, and 13 of the 15 teams already have a loss. It’s going to be a grind to get through this league, and the Panthers will head up to the Carrier Dome on Saturday to take on Jim Boeheim’s Syracuse Orange in another tough game.