Pitt comes back to beat Oakland in OT

CHRIS ADAMSKI Associated Press Published:

PITTSBURGH (AP) -- Greg Kampe shook his head dejectedly. The longtime Oakland coach had just watched his team blow an 18-point second-half lead to Pittsburgh.

"This was a chance to beat Pitt," Kampe said. "How often is Oakland ever going to beat Pitt? How often is Oakland ever going to beat Pitt here?"

Kampe's Golden Grizzlies will have to return and try again after the Panthers pulled arguably the most impressive comeback in the 107-year history of the Pittsburgh program in a 72-62 overtime victory Saturday night.

J.J. Moore had five of his team-high 16 points in overtime, and Pitt set a school record for largest halftime deficit overcome.

The Panthers (4-0) trailed by 14 at the half and by as many as 18 in the second half, the third-largest deficit they've come back from at any point in a game for a win. Pitt went on a 7-0 run over the final 59 seconds of regulation to force overtime, the biggest comeback the Panthers have made in the final minute of a game for a victory.

"We didn't shoot well at all, we didn't defend well at all, but one thing this team did do was fight," Pitt guard Tray Woodall said. "And we showed a lot of character."

Woodall and Dante Taylor were on the only other Pitt team to erase a seven-point deficit over the final 1:30 of regulation -- a triple-overtime winner against West Virginia Feb. 12, 2010.

This one might have been even more improbable considering the Panthers trailed from the 12:30 mark of the first half on as the Grizzlies (1-3) began a 24-8 run and led by 18 with 11:34 to go.

"We did great for 37 minutes," said Oakland center Corey Petros, "and then the last three minutes, we collapsed."

The Golden Grizzlies committed eight turnovers over the final 3:01 of regulation.

The only larger second-half deficit Pitt had overcome in its program's history was 52 years ago -- the Panthers came back from down 22 to beat Purdue on Dec. 2, 1960.

"Not your typical 10-point win," said Pitt coach Jamie Dixon, "that's for sure."

The Panthers improved to 95-3 against nonconference opponents in the 10-year history of the Petersen Events Center.

Corey Petros had 19 points for the Golden Grizzlies, who have never beaten a Big East opponent.

"This was a very hard moment for us, because when you come to Pitt and go against a guy who's one of the top coaches in the country and against one of the best programs in the country, in a building that they don't lose, we should have won the game," Kampe said.

"Nobody in this room can tell me we shouldn't have won."

Out to beat an opponent from any of the six major conferences for the third consecutive season, Oakland shot 46.8 percent (22 of 47) from the field.

Eight-and-a-half minutes into the second half, a free throw by Drew Valentine extended the Grizzlies' lead to 48-30.

But Pitt answered by hitting 3-pointers on consecutive possessions to get back to within 12. When Woodall found prized freshman Steven Adams for a dunk to pull Pitt to within single digits with 7:44 to play, the student section known as the "Oakland Zoo" -- named after the Pittsburgh neighborhood Pitt's campus resides in -- erupted.

Oakland University came to Pittsburgh having lost games earlier in the week at Louisiana-Lafayette and Boise State. They made 18 of their first 33 shots Saturday before Pitt went on a 13-3 run to make it 53-49 with 5:25 left.

"Those guys (Oakland) fought, but we figured eventually we would wear them down," Woodall said. "Eventually we thought they'd break down."


MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- Adonis Thomas scored 16 points and Antonio Barton added 14 points and No. 17 Memphis escaped with a 65-54 victory over Samford in an opening game of the Battle 4 Atlantis Tournament.

Joe Jackson added 13 points, four assists and three steals for Memphis (2-0), which converted all eight of its free throws in the final minute to preserve the victory.

Tim Williams led the Bulldogs (1-3) with 21 points and six rebounds, connecting on 7 of 11 shots. Raijon Kelly added 12 points on 4 of 6 shooting and five assists.

Samford was within 54-51 with 4:21 left, but Memphis' free throw shooting in the final minute made the difference.

NO. 20 NOTRE DAME 78, BYU 68

NEW YORK (AP) -- Jack Cooley had 19 points and 13 rebounds to lead No. 20 Notre Dame to a 78-68 victory over BYU in the third-place game of the Coaches vs. Cancer Classic on Saturday night.

Jerian Grant had 19 points -- 17 in the second half -- and Eric Atkins added 16, including the 3-pointer that gave the Fighting Irish a cushion after the Cougars had pulled within 63-61 with 4:28 to play.

Atkins hit the 3 28 seconds later and that was the fifth of six attempts from beyond the arc in the second half after the Irish had gone 1 of 7 from there in the first half.


SPRINGFIELD, Mo. -- Jamaal Franklin scored 15 of his 22 points in the first half to put No. 23 San Diego State up early, and James Rahon hit a key 3-pointer late in a 60-44 win over Missouri State.

The Aztecs led 39-30 midway through the second half before the Bears rallied. Missouri State (1-1) pulled within 41-37 on Anthony Downing's basket with 7:13 left.

But the Aztecs pulled away thanks to 3-pointers on consecutive possessions from Rahon and Chase Tapley.

It was the second consecutive win for San Diego State since the Aztecs lost against Syracuse.



IOWA CITY, Iowa -- Aaron White and Josh Oglesby each scored 13 points and Iowa rallied from a 23-point deficit to clip Gardner-Webb 65-56.

The Hawkeyes trailed by as much as 38-15 late in the first half before a 15-0 run cut Gardner-Webb's lead to eight. Iowa took its first lead, 47-46, with 8:22 left, and Devyn Marble's 3 with 2:17 to go put Iowa ahead 60-52.

Adam Woodbury had 12 points for the Hawkeyes (4-0), who outscored the Runnin' Bulldogs 47-18 in the second half and survived a major scare.



YPSILANTI, Mich. (AP) -- Derek Thompson scored 17 points and Glenn Bryant added 11 to lead Eastern Michigan to a 60-47 victory against IPFW in an "Ice Man" Classic game.

Daylen Harrison added eight points and eight rebounds for the Eagles (3-1).

Frank Gaines had 17 points and Luis Jacobo 10 for the Mastodons (2-2).

Pierre Bland's fast-break layup with 3:02 remaining got IPFW within 49-45, but that was its last successful shot from the floor. The Mastodons missed their last six attempts, with Da'Shonte Riley blocking two shots and Jamell Harris one for Eastern Michigan down the stretch.

Riley, who had four blocks for the game, gave the Eagles insurance points with a dunk and two free throws in the final 1:30.



TAMPA, Fla. -- Brandon Pokley scored 14 points as Western Michigan beat Maryland-Eastern Shore 68-51 on Saturday.

Shayne Whittington and Darius Paul added 13 points each for Western Michigan (3-1).

Nate Hutcheson, who had a career-high 30 points in Western Michigan's 81-71 win over Loyola of Chicago on Friday night, scored 10.



CINCINNATI -- Brad Redford's clutch free throws helped Xavier avoid being outhustled into an embarrassing upset loss at home.

Redford sank both ends of a bonus free throw situation with 37.1 seconds left and Xavier held on for a 61-59 win over pesky Robert Morris on Saturday.

Redford, previously scoreless for the game, was fouled by Lucky Jones after a ball fake in the corner and made both free throws.

The Colonials (1-3) called two timeouts after regaining possession, but Karvel Anderson missed a 3-pointer from the left wing with 12 seconds left.



INDIANAPOLIS -- Walt Lemon Jr. scored 19 points and Tyshon Pickett had 18 points and 10 rebounds, leading unbeaten Bradley to a 79-72 victory over IUPUI.

Jake Eastman chipped in 17 points on 8-of-12 shooting for the Braves (3-0), who went on an 8-1 run with 2:51 remaining to turn a 65-65 tie into a 73-66 lead, then hit enough free throws in the final minute to secure the win.

John Hart scored a career-high 26 points, including four 3-pointers, off the bench for the Jaguars (2-2), and Greg Rice and Mitchell Patton added 15 apiece. Donovan Gibbs had a team-high eight rebounds.

Want to leave your comments?

Sign in or Register to comment.