Jan. 29, 2013
CHICAGO – Pitt saw its chance to end its Big East winless streak fall short, as DePaul recorded the winning shot with 4.2 seconds left to escape 57-55 in Big East women’s basketball action on Tuesday evening at McGrath-Phillips Arena.
Junior Asia Logan finished with 15 points to lead four players in double figures for the Panthers (9-11, 0-7 Big East). Loliya Briggs had 12 points, while Brianna Kiesel chipped in 11. Logan, Briggs and Kiesel each recorded a team-high six rebounds apiece.
Brittany Hrynko led all scorers with 19 points for DePaul (16-5, 5-2 Big East). Katherine Harry had 12 points – eight of those in the first half – and 14 rebounds.
The game featured 11 ties and 10 lead changes.
“We really emphasized the three-point shot, that’s their bread and butter. They scored 3’s in transition and that hurt us,” said head coach Agnus Berenato “I thought we had a terrific game plan, but when you are tentative this happens. We felt we could win this game and I thought it was a great effort, but we came up short. You can’t shoot 31 percent and win, you have to convert your offensive rebounds – we had 16, but didn’t convert the second chances.
With Pitt holding a slim one-point halftime lead, the Blue Demons got a quick start to the second half by scoring five of the period’s first seven points. Pitt responded as Briggs drove the right side and picked up both the bucket and the foul with 17:35 remaining.
The Panthers used transition offense to stifle the Blue Demons and take their largest lead of the game (34-29) on back-to-back scores from Logan and Kiesel and force a DePaul timeout.
A three-pointer from Chanise Jenkins in front of her own bench silenced the Panthers Logan hit a jumper to again push the advantage to four, but Pitt could gain no ground missing its next nine field goal attempts. DePaul was just 3-of-12 over the same span, but two of its three baskets came from behind the arc. The last triple over the run with 9:01 left pushed the Blue Demons ahead, 41-38.
Redshirt junior Ashlee Anderson cut the defense and drove the lane for the Panthers, slicing the deficit to one at 41-40 with 7:32 showing.
A transition jumper from DePaul’s Kelsey Reynolds from the right side gave the Blue Demon a five-point lead at 47-42 and capped off a 6-2 run for the Blue Demons. After a timeout called by Pitt, the Panthers turned it over on the next possession. DePaul grabbed its largest lead of the game at 49-42 after taking the shot clock to the buzzer, collecting the rebound and finishing with a basket from Harry.
Logan narrowed the gap to five points with two free throws at the 4:03 mark. After another DePaul bucket, Ashlee Anderson calmly hit a triple from the far baseline make it a four-point contest at 51-47.
Coming out of the media, the Panthers had a chance to close in – but a floater in the lane feel short as DePaul’s Jenkins dropped her third triple of the game in transition to make it a seven-point lead. Anderson hit the first of two from the free throw line and Pitt grabbed the rebound on the missed second shot, but the Panthers turned the ball over on the baseline.
Pitt did not go away as Kiesel drive the lane with 54.1 seconds, converting both the field goal and the subsequent free throw for a 54-51 score.
DePaul hit one from the free throw line and the Panthers grabbed the rebound on the miss. Marquel Davis was fouled and collected both of her opportunities with 34.8 seconds to play to trim the margin to two at 55-53.
The Panthers’ defense pressured DePaul as the moved upcourt with Briggs stepping into the passing line to swipe the ball and shooting the ball ahead to Anderson for the game-tying field goal with 13.2 seconds showing.
The ball never left Hrynko’s hand for DePaul as she dribbled the length of the floor and hit a learning four-footer with 4.2 ticks left to collect the win. A 30-footer from Kiesel at the final horn sailed high.
The first 20 minutes featured six ties and seven lead changes. The Blue Demons got six of their first seven points from Harry, the last of the series at the 14:07 mark gave DePaul a 7-6 lead.
The Panthers took their first lead of the game at 11-9 on a layup from Anderson with 12:18 on the clock. The game was knotted three times over the next five minutes, lastly at 19-19 at the 7:14 mark. The Blue Demons took their biggest edge of the half (5) after two quick conversions. Pitt closed the half on a 6-0 run, four of the six points from Logan to take a 25-24 lead into the locker room.
Pitt shot just 31.3 percent from the field for the contest. DePaul recorded a 43.1 percent field goal effort. The Panthers, who recorded 13 more shots than the Blue Demons, also posted a 41-40 rebounding advantage.