• Home
  • NCAA
  • Pitt continues to rise up the rankings after blowing out Louisville on Saturday

Share & Comment:

Pitt continues to rise up the rankings after blowing out Louisville on Saturday

Senior forward Blake Hinson scored a career-high 41 points, as the soaring Panthers blew out lowly Louisville, 86-59, at Petersen Events Center in Pittsburgh on Saturday evening.

It was the fifth win in a row and the seventh in the past eight games for Pitt, who improved to 17-8, overall, and 8-6 in the ACC.

Was it a dominant performance by the Panthers, or did Hinson put them on his back and carry them to a win? Because he accounted for nearly half of Pitt’s scoring, I’d go with the latter. Hinson was a robust 14 of 24 from the field–including a deadly accurate nine of 13 from behind the arc. Oh yeah, and he was four of five from the free-throw line. Guards Jaland Lowe and Ishmael Leggett, who scored 10 points each, were the only other Panthers to reach double digits vs. a struggling Cardinals team that is now 8-18 on the season–including 3-12 in the ACC.

Hinson’s dominance really stood out over the first 20 minutes, as he scored 27 points for a Panthers team that went into halftime with a 37-27 lead.

Hinson fell just four points shy of the school record for points in a game. The legendary Don Hennon scored 45 points in a contest during the 1957/1958 campaign.

One only knows how big Pitt’s win may have been, had the Cardinals not been so successful from the free-throw line. That’s right, Louisville went to the line 21 times and made 18 of its attempts.

At least the Cardinals did something right on the evening.

With the win, the Panthers are now firmly in the tournament mix. They improved from 54 to 47 in the critical Net Rankings and Quad Wins category. If today was Selection Sunday, I’d like Pitt’s chances of getting a berth. Needless to say, today is not Selection Sunday. There are still six regular season games to go plus the ACC tournament. The Panthers still have their work cut out for them and cannot afford a major slump down the stretch.

Saturday’s victory moved the Panthers into a fourth-place tie in the ACC with both NC State and Wake Forest. Speaking of Wake Forest, Pitt travels to Winston-Salem, North Carolina, for a date with the Demon Deacons on Tuesday at 9 p.m. Wake Forest is undefeated at home through 13 games this year, but that shouldn’t faze a Panthers squad that just snapped Virginia’s 23-game home-winning streak last Tuesday night.

The Panthers have five road wins in the conference this year–including victories over Duke and Virginia, who were both ranked–and another one would only strengthen their NCAA tournament resume.


Sign up below for the latest news, stories and podcasts from our affiliates

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.