March 19, 2012
PITTSBURGH - Sophomore Lamar Patterson scored 15 of his career-high 19 points in the first half to help lead Pitt to an 82-61 win over Princeton in the quarterfinal round of the College Basketball Invitational at the Petersen Events Center on Monday evening.
The Panthers (19-16) advance to play at Butler in the CBI Semifinal contest at 8 p.m. ET on Wednesday, March 21. The game will be televised nationally on HDnet and will be played in Indianapolis at Hinkel Fieldhouse.
Patterson, who also had a career evening behind the arc with three 3-pointers, paced five players in double figures.
Senior Nasir Robinson posted his 10th career double-double with 12 points and 10 rebounds, while junior Tray Woodall tallied 15 points and a season-best 11 assists for the sixth double-double of the point guard's career. He also added a career-high eight rebounds, just shy of becoming the first Pitt player since 1998 to record a triple-double.
Sophomore Talib Zanna added 11 points and senior Ashton Gibbs had 10. Gibbs passed former Panthers great Billy Knight (1971-74) on the all-time Pitt scoring chart, taking over sole possession of eighth place (1,741 points).
After Princeton (20-12) took a 2-0 lead on its second possession, Pitt ripped off a 12-0 run capped by five-straight from Woodall. The point guard closed the surge with an up-and-under layup in the paint to put the Panthers ahead, 12-2.
The Tigers closed to three points on two occasions, lastly on 3-pointer from Mack Darrow to make it 22-19 at the 8:46 mark. Five of Princeton's first seven field goals came from behind the arc.
The Panthers pieced together a 27-6 run to close the period en route to its highest first half point total of the season. Pitt recorded the last 14 consecutive points over the final 3:43 of the half to take a 49-25 advantage into the locker room.
Pitt shot 55.6 percent in the first half, which included a 57.1 percent showing from long range (8-of-14).
The Panthers extended their lead to 26 points at 59-33 following a three-point play from Zanna with 15:04 remaining.
Princeton responded behind the play of Ian Hummer, who netted 10 of the Tigers' 19 points over a seven-minute span to trim the advantage to 66-55.
Pitt quieted the rally with six-straight points, capped by two consecutive scores from Gibbs to create cushion on the scoreboard. The last bucket from Gibbs began a streak of four-straight field goals to - again - make it a 20-point plus game.