Another loss sends the spiraling Pittsburgh Panthers (8-17, 0-12 ACC) to their 12th-straight defeat as they fall to the No. 16 Clemson Tigers (20-4, 9-3 ACC), 72-48.
Clemson was led by Gabe DeVoe, who had 25 points and six rebounds in 36 minutes, as he had his fourth straight game with five or more three-pointers. The Panthers were led by a career-high 19 points for Terrell Brown who also grabbed eight rebounds in 28 minutes.
The Panthers weren’t able to hang with the Tigers potent shooting as they hit 44.4 percent of their three-point shots and forced 15 Panther turnovers which led to the big loss.
Tiger faithful had to be feeling pretty good when they led by 10 at half holding Pitt to only 22 points and only one player, Brown, providing any offense for Pitt. The Tigers then came out in the second half hitting everything and extending the lead as far as 28.
Head coach Kevin Stallings was critical of his team’s solo approach once the game began getting out of hand.
“When the game starts getting tough for us, we’ve had this tendency to go solo,” Stallings said. “Our team is not made up of guys that are capable of winning games going solo. That’s a lesson that’s coming more slowly than it needs to.”
That’s as true a statement as the head coach has said all year. The Panthers don’t have a game-breaking player at this point and it’s evident in their 0-12 conference record.
Stallings also had an idea in the morning at shootaround that the team wasn’t in the clearest mindset.
“This is probably only the second time this season I could say this,” Stallings said. “I didn’t think we approached this game with the right mentality…I could tell today at the shootaround that we weren’t where we needed to be.”
This was an encouraging game for Brown as he has been largely inconsistent this year and really showed some promise Thursday blocking two shots and dropping 19 points on 9-15 shooting. Two of his eight rebounds came on the offensive end.
Brown was very optimistic after the game about where the team is headed.
“We know we’re getting better every day,” Brown said. “It’s going to take time. It’s not just going to happen the next day. But we’re not going to stop and put our heads down and say ‘it’s over’. We’re going to keep fighting.”
The kids have a good mindset. Hopefully, for them, it translates into a conference victory before the season’s over.
- It seems that there is never two guys playing a solid game together. Last night, Brown had an incredible game for Panthers standards last night. But if you look at the box scores of previous games, there’s always one guy carrying the load and the Panthers don’t get secondary scoring. One night it’s Marcus Carr. Another night it’s Jared Wilson-Frame. Thursday it was Brown. If you can’t get secondary scoring with the guy who’s carrying the load on the night, it’s impossible to win. You’d hate to think where the Panthers would’ve been last night if Terrell Brown hadn’t played that well Thursday.
- Just another ugly night in the turnover department. The Panthers had yet another ugly game handling the ball. Between multiple traveling penalties, weak and avoidable offensive fouls, and simply not getting the ball up the floor in a timely and efficient fashion, the Panthers committed 15 turnovers. Just an ugly game and the 48 points, and only 22 in the first half proved as much.
- Home sweet home. Not that it makes much of a difference for the Panthers as they have yet to win an ACC game, but after a grueling three-game road trip, the Panthers are headed home. They faced two ranked teams and a Miami team that was ranked previously this year but has faced some injuries that hindered him. It was a very bad road trip in which the Panthers were outscored by 63 over the three games. They’ll host Louisville on Sunday and hopefully can at least compete if not, pick up their first ACC win.