Feb. 27, 2012
MORGANTOWN, W.Va. - Freshman Brianna Kiesel scored 21 points to pace Pitt women's basketball, but it was not enough as the Panthers dropped a 60-42 decision at West Virginia on Monday evening.
The 20-point plus performance was the sixth of the season for Kiesel. Redshirt sophomore Leeza Burdgess scored nine points and added nine rebounds for the Panthers (8-21, 0-16).
WVU (14-5, 4-2) was led by 14 points by Asya Bussie. The Mountaineers got at least three points from 10 of the 11 players that saw action.
Tied at 18-18 at the half, the Panthers grabbed their first lead of the game on a 3-pointer - Pitt's first of the game - from Kiesel to give Pitt a 21-20 lead with 18:45 remaining.
The lead was short-lived as on the next possession, WVU connected on a triple from the left side from reserve Brooke Hampton. The Panthers would tie the game up twice more over the next two minutes as Kiesel and Marquel Davis delivered jumpers on consecutive possessions. The last tied the contest at 27-27 with 16:18 left.
The Mountaineers countered with a 14-1 run, scoring the first six of those points (6-of-8) from the stripe and moving to a 41-28 advantage at the 9:30 mark. The Panthers went without field goal for over seven minutes as Burdgess ended the drought with a turnaround in the post.
The Mountaineers stretched their edge to 15 twice, but back-t-back buckets from Kiesel in a five-second span cut the deficit to 11 at 49-38. That would be as close as Pitt would come - as the Mountaineers used a 7-0 run to put distance between them and their rival. WVU went 6-of-8 from the free throw line over the final three minutes en route to the win, their third straight over Pitt.
Both teams struggled offensively to start the game. The Panthers missed their first 10 shots of the game before connecting on their first field goal at the 6:46 mark of the period. Despite the ineffectiveness, the first field goal of the game from Burdgess made it a 10-6 game as WVU was just 4-of-15 over the same stretch.
After a WVU free throw, Pitt dropped two straight - layups from Burdgess and Kiesel - to close to a point (11-10) with 5:18 showing in the first half.
WVU pulled to a five-point edge, but the Panthers chipped at the score and closed the half on a 7-4 spurt to tie the game at the break. Pitt made its last three shots of the period and a pair of free throws
Pitt is seeded 16th in the Big East Championship and begins play on Friday, March 2 at 2 p.m. versus No. 9 seed USF (16-14, 8-8).
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