January 7, 2007
Panthers top USF at home
The No. 10 Pitt men's basketball team improved to 14-2 overall, 2-0 in the Big East, Sunday afternoon when the Panthers beat South Florida (9-7, 0-2) 69-48 at the Petersen Events Center. Sophomore guard Levance Fields led Pitt with 11 points, recording his seventh-straight double-digit scoring game.
On Pitt's first possession, the Panthers took a shot clock violation, a precarious omen to the start of the game. But that would turn out to be far from Pitt's worst offensive possession, as the Panthers hit two of their first nine shots and four of the first 15. The low-water mark for the team, though, came with under seven minutes left in the first half, when Mike Cook missed a jump shot and the Panthers' field goal percentage dropped to 22% (5 of 23).
"Maybe it was just an early game," Cook said about the team's sluggish start. "With a noon start we have breakfast at eight, so I think it was just an early game; we struggled with that last year too. It's just something we have to improve on."
The Panthers did improve after that point: in the remaining six minutes and 44 seconds of the first half, Pitt hit seven of 12 field goal attempts, a 58% rate, including two of three from three-point range.
South Florida had led in the game, as late as the 9:14 mark of the first half.
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