The Pitt Panthers dropped their second straight game on Sunday afternoon, falling 73-66 to the Seton Hall Pirates at the Prudential Center. Pitt had a six-point lead with under eight minutes to play but squandered it away to the Hall as the clock wound down. In a matter of two minutes, a six-point lead became a four-point deficit.
Ashton Gibbs, the preseason Big East Player of the Year, led all scorers with 26 points. The Panthers cut a Pirates lead to one when Gibbs drew a foul on a three-pointer, sinking all three attempts from the charity stripe to cut it to 67-66 with a minute and a half to go. Gibbs scored 17 of the Panthers' last 19 points, but Pitt could not get the stops at the other end of the floor.
Western Pennsylvania native and one-time Pitt recruit Herb Pope dominated in the paint, scoring 19 points and grabbing 14 rebounds. Pope took a nice feed from fellow senior Jordan Theodore to lay in a bucket and extend the Pirate lead back to three with under 30 seconds to play. Travon Woodall then turned it over for Pitt and a questionable flagrant foul call on Nasir Robinson, who was trying to foul Pope and put him at the line, sealed the deal.
Seton Hall, which was right on the bubble, improves to 6-7 in the Big East, while Pitt drops to 4-9, losing its second straight game after the four-game win streak to start this month. The Panthers' path to the NCAA Tournament just got even steeper.
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