for this game

Gibbs, Wanamaker help Pitt down Georgetown

Jan 13, 2011 - 4:32 AM Washington, DC (Sports Network) - Pittsburgh's backcourt tandem of Ashton Gibbs and Brad Wanamaker combined for 36 points and led the fifth-ranked Panthers to a 72-57 victory over No. 22 Georgetown at Verizon Center.

Gibbs sank five three-pointers and finished with 22 points, while Wanamaker scored 14 with four assists for the Panthers (16-1, 4-0 Big East), who never trailed and led by as many as 22 in their sixth consecutive win.

Center Gary McGhee provided nine rebounds and eight points, while Gilbert Brown added 12 points in the victory.

"I was really happy with how we played, how we stayed with our stuff, how we ran our sets really well -- especially in the first half, and even in the second half," said Pitt head coach Jamie Dixon.

Chris Wright had 14 points to pace Georgetown (12-5, 1-4), which is off to its worst conference start since going 0-4 in 1998-99.

Georgetown entered Wednesday's contest as one of the NCAA's worst teams in terms of turnover margin, with a minus-1.9 per game average. That plagued them in a January 3 loss to St. John's and especially during Saturday's setback against West Virginia, in which the Hoyas shot 50 percent but turned the ball over 18 times.

On Wednesday, Georgetown limited its turnovers to nine, but shot poorly. The Hoyas made just 5-of-20 from three-point range and 14-of-25 from the foul line in their third consecutive loss.

Georgetown head coach John Thompson III said that the poor shooting is the nature of the game "in many regards," adding that the team needs to get back to basics to get its confidence back.

"A lot of times when we're missing shots is, 'I'm going to shoot my way out of it,'" Thompson said. "It's a balance between that confidence in yourself and understanding, 'Let's get some penetration, let's get some post-ups, let's get to the foul line, which will help me get out of that.'"

Pitt, on the other hand, had few shooting problems Wednesday and took control with a dominant first half, in which it made 14-of-24 shots.

The Panthers took control in the middle of the opening period with a 15-2 run. Gibbs made three long-distance shots to fuel the rally, which McGhee capped with a dunk, making it a 24-9 game with 8:44 left.

Georgetown's offense regained some life, but Pitt continued to knock down open shots. Gibbs' three-pointer with 11 seconds on the clock made it a 41-24 contest at the break.

It was too big a deficit for Georgetown to overcome in the second half -- every time the Hoyas put together a positive sequence to narrow Pitt's lead, the Panthers responded.

About four minutes into the second half, the Hoyas were within 14 points. But Pitt followed with an 8-0 run, capped by two Nasir Robinson layups to stretch its lead to 55-33.

Georgetown put together a seven-point burst later in the half, getting within 60-49 on Jerrelle Benimon's layup with 5:22 on the clock. But Gibbs drilled a three on the Panthers' next possession, and Pitt secured the victory at the foul line.

Game Notes

Julian Vaughn and Austin Freeman had 13 and 12 points, respectively, for the Hoyas...Pitt entered the game first in the nation in rebounding margin, averaging 13.8 more than its opponents per game. Wednesday, however, the Panthers held a 34-32 edge, as the Hoyas grabbed 11 offensive rebounds...Georgetown had only five assists.