WVU defeats Pitt, 66-48

February 16, 2012 11:15 pm

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The West Virginia Mountaineers will take bragging rights in the Backyard Brawl with them to the Big 12 Conference.

In the final scheduled game between these two longtime rivals, West Virginia beat Pitt, 66-48, at the Petersen Events Center Thursday night.

Pitt (15-12, 4-10) has lost three consecutive games and 11 of its past 15. The Panthers will not finish with a winning record in Big East play for the first time since the 2000-01 season. Pitt's hopes for making an 11th consecutive NCAA tournament now appear to rest with winning the Big East tournament at Madison Square Garden.

For West Virginia (17-10, 7-7) it was a much-needed victory. The Mountaineers had lost five of their previous six and were in danger of falling out of tournament contention. They travel to Notre Dame for their next game next week with Marquette, DePaul and South Florida after that.

The win meant Pitt and West Virginia split the season series by winning on the other's home court for the first time since 1969-70. The game Thursday night was the 184th in the history of the series, and the Mountaineers will take a 96-88 lead with them as they head to the Big 12 Conference next season.

There is not a scheduled game next season between the two universities, which have played every season since 1917.

Kevin Jones led the Mountaineers with 16 points. Darryl Bryant added 15 and Deniz Kilicli 14 for the Mountaineers, who shot 44 percent from the field.

Pitt was led by Tray Woodall's 12 points. The Panthers shot just 37 percent from the field.

West Virginia led 26-25 at halftime, and the Mountaineers started to pull away early in the second half.

A 20-5 run midway through the half was the difference. The Mountaineers blew the game open with an assist from the Panthers, who kept turning the ball over at a high rate.


First Published 2012-02-16 22:15:45

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