Pitt's free fall continues with loss to No. 23 LouisvilleJan 22, 2012 - 6:53 AM Pittsburgh, PA (Sports Network) - Kyle Kuric poured in 21 points and No. 23 Louisville kept Pittsburgh winless in conference play with a 73-62 decision at Petersen Events Center.
Chane Behanan posted 19 points and Gorgui Dieng added 13 with a game-high 14 rebounds for the Cardinals (15-5, 3-4 Big East), who shook off a loss at Marquette on Monday.
Kuric had missed the previous two games due to an ankle injury.
"These guys are truly remarkable to me," Louisville coach Rick Pitino said. "I have never seen a team have to adjust to so many different parts. I equate it to a Broadway show when they have stand-ins. We have had so many 'stand-ins' and our guys have been able to pick it up."
Lamar Patterson and Ashton Gibbs each notched 14 points for the Panthers (11-9, 0-7), who have lost eight in a row.
Gibbs' jumper early in the second half pulled Pitt within 42-39, but Louisville used a 14-4 burst from there to assume control.
Kuric kicked it off with a shot from long distance, then the Cardinals asserted their inside presence with close-range buckets by Behanan, Dieng and Peyton Siva before a Russ Smith trey capped the run to make it 56-43 with 8:05 remaining.
A Gibbs trey cut the deficit to 10 less than two minutes later, but that's as close as the Panthers came.
"We just couldn't get the stops that we needed and they caused a couple turnovers," Pitt coach Jamie Dixon said. "There were far too many lay-ups and post-ups for them. We felt we had to win the battle of the boards, but we came out even. We had our opportunities, especially some transition plays that we didn't convert. We need to continue working on that."
Pitt led 9-4 and 13-7 early, only to see Louisville take back the momentum and go up 19-15.
A tip-in from Robinson and a three-pointer by Gibbs gave the Panthers a 20-19 edge, but the Cardinals scored the next seven points. Chris Smith's lay-in made it 31-25 but the hosts went to intermission down three after a trey from Patterson.
Louisville has taken four of the last five games in Pittsburgh and lead the all-time series, 6-5...Russ Smith totaled 11 points, three rebounds and three assists but notched a game-high six steals and committed a game-high six turnovers...Robinson had 12 points and seven boards in defeat.
- LOUISVILLE: 73
Jan 21 11:02 PM
- LOUISVILLE: 31
Jan 21 9:52 PM
- LOUISVILLE: 0
1st Half - 20:00
Jan 21 9:07 PM
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