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Dec. 3, 2013

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Penn State at Pitt • Big Ten/ACC Challenge • Petersen Events Center • December 3, 2013
Pitt 78, Penn State 69

• In the Pitt men’s basketball team’s first time participating in the B1G/ACC Challenge as a member of the ACC, the Panthers renewed their in-state rivalry with Penn State and defeated the Nittany Lions 78-69 in an entertaining, back-and-forth contest at the Petersen Events Center on Tuesday night. The game saw 13 ties and nine lead changes. It was the first matchup between the two schools since Dec. 10, 2005.

• Pitt’s nine-point margin of victory was the biggest lead either team held in the fiercely contested game. It was also the Panthers’ smallest margin of victory this season.

• Pitt is off to an undefeated 8-0 start for the first time since the 2010-11 season and for the seventh time in 10 seasons.

• Pitt improves to 71-75 in the all-time series against Penn State and has won six-straight matchups over the Nittany Lions. The Panthers haven’t lost to Penn State in Pittsburgh since Feb. 18, 1978.

• The average margin of victory for Pitt in those six consecutive victories over Penn State is 23.0 points.

• Pitt head coach Jamie Dixon now owns a perfect 4-0 record vs. Penn State and is 127-10 all-time vs. nonconference opponents.

• Pitt is now 21-0 against teams from the state of Pennsylvania since the start of the 2009-10 season.

• After struggling from the field in the first half (7-25, 28%), Pitt trailed 30-28 at halftime, marking the first time this season that the Panthers entered the second half with a deficit to overcome. Pitt’s shooting improved significantly in the second half (17-for-29, 58.6%), helping the Panthers come from behind.

• The Nittany Lions held their last lead at the 5:15 mark of the second half (59-58); it marked the latest time Pitt trailed in a game this season.

• The Panthers enjoyed another successful game at the free-throw line. Pitt made 28-35 (80%) shots from the charity stripe, which was the seventh time in eight games that the Panthers have shot above 70% at the free-throw line.

• Despite being held to just two points in the first half, senior Talib Zanna finished with a double-double, scoring 16 points and grabbing 10 points in the game. It was Zanna’s third double-double of the season and the ninth of his career. Zanna also set a career high with four blocks—all of which came in Zanna’s dominant second half. His previous career high was two blocks, a total he has achieved seven times.

• Pitt matched a season high with five blocks; it was the third time this season the Panthers reached that total.

• Reigning ACC Player of the Week Lamar Patterson reached double-figure scoring for the sixth consecutive game and the seventh time this season. The senior finished with 16 points and nine rebounds, which was his best rebounding effort of the year.

• Junior Cameron Wright followed up his career-high 20 points against Duquesne in Pitt’s last game with his sixth double-digit scoring game of the season. Wright finished with 12 points, and he set career highs with free-throw makes (8) and attempts (9).

• Freshman Michael Young contributed to Pitt’s free-throw efforts. He converted all six of his attempts from the free-throw line, setting career highs in makes and attempts (6).

• Another freshman, Josh Newkirk, played a career-high 25 minutes. He finished with five points and three rebounds.

• Pitt outrebounded Penn State 38-29. It was the seventh time in eight games that the Panthers have won the battle on the glass this season.

Post-Game Notes

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