Feb. 17, 2007
PITTSBURGH (AP) - Levance Fields and Ronald Ramon made two free throws each in the final 1:40 to prevent No. 7 Pittsburgh from being upset at home for the second time in six days, and the Panthers held off Washington 65-61 on Saturday despite an ineffective game from star Aaron Gray.
The 7-foot Gray was limited to five points to match his season low and wasn't a factor in the first half, but scored inside with 2:43 remaining to make it 60-57 and give him 1,000 points for his career. Fields and Ramon then made their free throws around a Spencer Hawes basket for Washington (16-10), which led by as many as seven points in the first half but never was ahead in the second half.
Washington still hasn't beaten a top 10 team on the road since defeating Kansas on Dec. 14, 1974, losing 32 in a row over than span.
Mike Cook scored 15, Field had 14, Ramon added 11 and Sam Young had 10 for Pitt (23-4), which was coming off a 66-53 loss to Louisville on Monday. The Panthers won despite not getting a basket in the final 2:45 of play.
Jon Brockman had 13 points and nine rebounds and Hawes had 12 points and 12 boards but missed 10 of his 16 shots for the Huskies.
Washington's talented but inexperienced front line of the 6-foot-10 Hawes and 6-7 Brockman teamed to shut down Gray, who didn't score or get a rebound for the first 10-plus minutes of the game. Gray, averaging 14.8 points, had scored in double figures for five consecutive games.
But with Gray and 6-10 Levon Kendall (four points) doing little at either end of the court, Pitt coach Jamie Dixon went much of the game with a smaller but quicker lineup in which 6-6 sophomore Young took Kendall's place and the 6-1 Ramon played guard. Young and the 6-4 Cook gave Washington matchup problems, and they helped Pitt rally and take a 31-28 halftime lead even with Gray neutralized.
Pitt avoided losing successive games at the Petersen Events Center for only the second time since the arena opened in 2002, despite going 4-of-15 from 3-point range to 7-of-11 for Washington. Pitt is 7-of-36 from beyond the arc in its last two games.
The Panthers are 47-1 at the Petersen Events Center against non-conference opponents, losing only to Bucknell on Jan. 2, 2005.
Gray is the 34th Pitt player to reach the career 1,000-point mark.