Jan. 20, 2010
PITTSBURGH, Pa. - Junior guard Chris Wright (Bowie, Md./St. John's College H.S.) scored a BIG EAST career high 27 points to lead four players in double figures as No. 12 Georgetown used a 9-0 run late in the second half and went on to beat No. 9 Pittsburgh, 74-66, in front of 12,677 fans at the Petersen Events Center Wednesday night. Georgetown's win ends a 31-game home court win streak for the Panthers.
It was the third win in the last four games for Georgetown, ranked No. 12 in the Associated Press Top 25 poll and No. 14 in the ESPN/USA Today Top 25 Coaches' poll, as the team improves to 14-3 overall and 5-2 in BIG EAST play. Pittsburgh falls to 15-3 overall and 5-1 in the league.
The teams went into the half tied at 31-all and the second half was closely contested with one tie and nine lead changes. Pittsburgh had opened up a four-point lead, 53-49, on a dunk from Gilbert Brown, but Wright sandwiched layups around a free throw from sophomore guard Jason Clark (Arlington, Va./Bishop O'Connell) to give GU a 54-53 lead.
Jermaine Dixon responded with a three-pointer, giving Pitt a 56-54 lead with 7:48 to play. It was the last lead for the Panthers, as sophomore center Greg Monroe (New Orleans, La./Helen Cox) hit a pair of free throws to tie the game, starting a 9-0 run over 2:13 that gave Georgetown a 63-56 lead they would not relinquish. Wright scored five points during the run, hitting a three-pointer off an assist from junior forward Julian Vaughn (Vienna, Va./Oak Hill Academy) and then a layup, The spurt was capped when Monroe blocked a shot from Jermaine Dixon, grabbed the defensive rebound and fed Vaughn in the open court, who dished to Freeman for a dunk, forcing Pitt to call a timeout.
A layup from Brad Wannamaker pulled the Panthers to within six points, 66-60, with 3:14 to play. Both teams missed chances in the next two minutes and Georgetown was left with one second on the shot clock with 1:15 to play when junior guard Austin Freeman (Mitchellville, Md./DeMatha) found Wright streaking to the basket on an inbound play. Wright scored the layup as the clock expired and the Hoyas extended the lead to eight points, 68-60, with 1:15 left.
A layup from Gilbert Brown made it 68-62 with 50 seconds left, but the Hoyas hit 6-of-8 free throws in the final 48 seconds, with Monroe hitting a pair with 48 seconds left.
Pitt had jumped out to a quick 6-0 lead after three free throws from Dixon and a three-point play from Gary McGhee, but the Hoyas used an 11-2 run over 1:36 and took an 11-8 lead on a three-pointer from Wright.
A jumper from Dixon pulled the Panthers to within 11-10, but the Hoyas used an 8-1 run and took a 19-11 lead on a jumper from Monroe, one of two baskets he hit during the run. Pitt would pull to within two points, 19-17, on a layup from Travon Woodall, but back-to-back three-pointers from Freeman gave the Hoyas their biggest lead of the game, 25-17, with 7:54 to play in the half. The Panthers responded with a 12-4 run and tied the game at 29-all on a dunk from McGhee with 3:48 to play in the half. A jumper from Wright and a basket from Pitt's Gilbert Brown sent the teams into the half knotted at 31-all.
Wright connected on 11-of-17 shots from the field, hit all three of his three-point attempts and was 2-of-2 from the line for 27 points, while Monroe recorded his seventh double-double of the season with 13 points and 11 rebounds. Freeman finished with 13 points, four rebounds and three assists, while Vaughn chipped in 11 points, five rebounds and a career-high six assists. Clark added seven points, two rebounds and two assists.
The Hoyas shot 46.4 percent from the floor (26-of-56), including 50 percent in the second half (15-of-30), 70.0 percent of their three-pointers (7-of-10) and were 71.4 percent from the free throw line (15-of-21). Pitt held a 34-33 advantage on the boards, while Georgetown had 14 assists, committed a season-low eight turnovers and blocked five shots.
The Hoyas return home on Saturday, Jan. 23, hosting BIG EAST rival Rutgers at Verizon Center. Tipoff is slated for noon. The game will be shown live on MASN, with Mike Gleason and Mike Kelly calling the action. It can be heard locally on ESPN 980 AM.