With one rivalry game out of the way and another on the horizon, Pittsburgh will try to stay focused Tuesday when Mount St. Mary’s visits. The Panthers erased cross-town foe Duquesne 76-64 on Friday in the “City Game” and will host No. 16 West Virginia on Saturday in the “Backyard Brawl.”
Ryan Luther led the way against the Dukes with 16 points, nine rebounds, four assists and three steals in 37 minutes as the Panthers won their third straight game and avenged a loss in last year’s matchup. “Ryan I think set the tone for the game, particularly in the first half. I felt like he played like the best player on the floor, and in my biased opinion, he was,” Pitt second-year coach Kevin Stallings said of the senior forward, who has averaged 16.3 points, nine rebounds, 4.3 assists, 1.3 blocks and 2.3 steals during the win streak. Freshmen Marcus Carr, Shamiel Stevenson and Parker Stewart combined for 42 points on 15-of-20 shooting, with Carr adding five assists and Stevenson seven boards. Pitt has compiled a 138-6 ledger in non-conference play at the Petersen Events Center and is 72-1 all-time against teams currently in the Northeast Conference.
TV: 7 p.m. ET, ACC Network Plus
ABOUT MOUNT ST. MARY’S (3-5): Junior Robinson, a 5-5 senior, scored a career high 39 points - including nine in the extra session - to lead the Mountaineers to an 80-75 overtime victory over Loyola (Md.) on Saturday. Robinson, who leads the NEC in scoring at 21.9 points per game, scored the most points by a Mount player since Sam Prescott scored 44 against Bryant on Feb. 14, 2013. Freshman Jonah Antonio is averaging 17 points and 5.2 rebounds in the last five games, hitting 22-of-50 from 3-point range.
ABOUT PITTSBURGH (4-4): The Panthers are shooting 53.1 percent from the field - including 58.5 percent in the second half - during their win streak. The 6-1 Carr is averaging 14 points, 3.7 rebounds and four assists during the streak while shooting 66.7 percent (14-of-21) from the field. Stewart, a 6-5 wing player and finalist for Mr. Basketball in Tennessee last year, scored a career-high 14 points and drained 4-of-6 shots beyond the arc against Duquesne.
1. The Panthers have shot 50 percent or better in five consecutive halves and four consecutive games.
2. Mount St. Mary’s lost to Notre Dame earlier this season 88-62 and is 1-24 all-time against teams from the ACC.
3. Luther has led the Panthers in scoring in each of the past seven games.
PREDICTION: Pittsburgh 75, Mount St. Mary’s 68