Rutgers 62 – Pittsburgh 39: Panthers hit new low, dropping 5th straight

Rutgers 62 – Pittsburgh 39

The Pittsburgh Panthers (11-6, 0-4) put on an embarrassing display of offensive basketball, suffering a 62-39 defeat to the Rutgers Scarlet Knights (10-7, 2-2 Big East) on Wednesday night at .
Pitt dropped their fifth straight, the longest losing streak in the Jamie Dixon era, and the Scarlet Knights held the Panthers to 21 percent shooting (12 of 57).
Pitt was dominated in all facets, as the Scarlet Knights out rebounded the Panthers 51-35, outscored them in the paint 23-14 and were intimidating down low, blocking six shots and forcing 15 Panthers turnovers.
Pitt being out-rebounded by 16 was most disappointing for Nasir Robinson. “It was the most disappointing thing about the game because that is our main focus, ” Robinson said about the Panthers struggles.
Head coach Jamie Dixon on the Panthers woes:
“There is not a lot we can say, ” head coach Jamie Dixon said. “The kids are extremely disappointed, we are disappointed as a staff and we know our fans are disappointed. We are very sorry for how we played. We have to get better and that is what we are going to do. That is what we are going to do at practice tomorrow. We have a lot of work to do.
Dixon said everything starts with the Panthers poor shooting.
“It starts with the shooting, ” Dixon said. “To start the game we had good looks. We had layups and we just didn’t make them. It is catching up to us. The rhythm is just not there.”
JJ Moore led Pitt with 10 points coming off the bench and Nasir Robinson added 7 points and 9 rebounds.
It was another dismal night for Ashton Gibbs who had 8 points on the night and Gibbs continues to struggle from the field, going 2 of 11 and 0-for-7 from three point range. Gibbs has been asked to handle the ball handling duties due to injuries and it’s a spot that is wearing on him and has him out of position.
“He is playing hard and he still is doing a lot of things for us, ” Dixon said. “I know there is disappointment, but I know he will come hard and ready to work tomorrow. I still have a lot of confidence in him.”
Defensively Rutgers was outstanding. “Honestly it seemed like they knew our plays, ” Gibbs said. “Coach Rice did a good job of scouting us, and it led to them making great switches off of screens.”
“We run half of what Pitt runs because they are good plays, ” Rutgers head coach Mike Rice said. “Our switching defense doesn’t allow Ashton Gibbs an open look, any freedom or any open space.”
Pitt 0-4 in the Big East, is the only winless team in conference play. They never led in the final thirty minutes of the game.

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