Gibbs and Wanamaker propel Pitt past Robert MorrisNov 24, 2010 - 4:34 AM Pittsburgh, PA (Sports Network) - Ashton Gibbs scored a game-high 20 points and Brad Wanamaker filled the stat sheet with 17 points, seven rebounds and seven assists, guiding the No. 5 Pittsburgh Panthers to a 74-53 victory over Robert Morris.
The Panthers (6-0), four days removed from downing Texas for the 2K Sports Classic title, used a 14-2 run after the midway point of the second half to turn a close game into a rout.
Gary McGhee added 11 points and 12 rebounds, while Gilbert Brown netted 11 points for the victors.
Russell Johnson scored a team-high 15 points for Robert Morris (2-2), which was coming off a win over Duquesne on Friday. The Colonials shot just 30.9 percent from the floor and allowed 25 second-chance points.
"We couldn't make shots, we didn't execute on offense and we didn't make them work defensively," explained Robert Morris coach Andrew Toole. "Against a team like Pitt you won't be able to drive to the rim. You need to penetrate and pass and that didn't happen enough for us. You can't shoot one-on-one; it has to be a team effort. That's why we shot a low percentage."
Pitt led 33-28 at the break and scored the first nine points of the second half. The underdogs had an answer though, netting 11 of the next 13 points to cut the deficit to 44-39 following Velton Jones' 1-for-2 showing at the foul line with just under 11 minutes to play.
The trio of Brown, Gibbs and Wanamaker, however, showed why the Panthers are one of the favorites to win the Big East Conference, as each drained a try from behind the arc the next three times down the floor to spark the game- sealing flurry.
McGhee's hoop and free throw made it 58-41 with seven minutes remaining, and the hosts coasted from there.
"Game after game, wherever it's played, we execute down the stretch," Panthers head coach Jamie Dixon said. "I think execution is key and the defense tightens up."
In the first half, Wanamaker's second three-point play in a span of three possessions sparked a string of seven straight points by the Panthers, with Brown's bucket making it a 24-11 game with 8 1/2 minutes left.
Elton Roy and Johnson each made three-pointers on the next two Robert Morris touches to stay within striking distance, and the Colonials were within five at the break.
Pitt has won all 29 games in this series...The Panthers extended their home winning streak over non-conference opponents to 51...Nasir Robinson pulled down 11 rebounds for the Panthers, who held a 51-36 edge on the glass...Pitt shot 45.8 percent from the floor, though the Panthers had nearly double as many turnovers (15) as takeaways (eight)...Roy, Yann Charles and Coron Williams each scored eight points for Robert Morris.
- ROBERT MORRIS: 53
Nov 23 8:53 PM
- ROBERT MORRIS: 28
Nov 23 7:46 PM
- ROBERT MORRIS: 0
1st Half - 20:00
Nov 23 7:05 PM
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