Youngstown State senior Kendrick Perry scored a game-high 28 points as the Penguins dropped a 91-73 decision to Pitt on Saturday afternoon at the Petersen Events Center. The Penguins are the first team to score more than 70 against the Panthers this year.
For the game, YSU shot 46.4 percent, knocking down 51.7 percent (15-of-29) in the second half. The Guins made 26-of-56 shots in the contest. YSU converted five of its six 3-pointers in the second half. Pitt shot 51.5 percent in the game making 35-of-68 shots.
In the second half, Pitt scored the first seven points to extend an 11-point halftime lead 50-32 just three minutes into the period. YSU crept within 55-42 on a Keene 3-pointer at the 14:23 but the Panthers answered with six straight points.
The Panthers (10-0) pushed their advantage to 72-46 with 10:35 remaining following a Josh Newkirk 3-pointer. From that point, the Guins outscored Pitt 27-19 in the final 10 minutes. YSU pulled within 84-69 on a Cole 3-pointer with 2:21 remaining.
Pitt had five players scored in double figures as Lamar Patterson scored 18 points to lead the way.
YSU (7-5) trailed just 36-30 with 2:30 left in the half before the Panthers closed on a 7-2 run to grab a 43-32 advantage at the break. Perry scored 13 points while Shawn Amiker came off the bench to score seven.
The first half featured four lead changes and a two ties. YSU kept the contest tight the first eight-plus minutes trailing 16-14 after Amiker converted a three-point play off a nifty layup and free throw with 11:41 remaining. Off the timeout, the Panthers scored seven straight to boost the advantage to 23-14 following a James Robinson three-point play at 8:59.
From that point YSU was able to get within five on two occasions. The first came on a driving bucket by Belin with 7:09 left (25-20). The second time after the lead increased to nine, Belin drained a 3-pointer and Marcus Keene made one-of-two free throws at the 3:57 mark to make the game 31-26.
At the 2:21 mark, YSU hung tough trailing 36-30 following a steal and layup by Perry.
In the first half, YSU shot 40.7 percent making 11-of-27 shots from the field. The Guins were 9-of-10 from the free-throw line. Pitt was 16-of-34 (47.1 percent) and made 10-of-13 free-throw attempts.
The Penguins return home to play Bethune-Cookman at the Beeghly Center on Tuesday night. Tipoff at the Beeghly Center is set for 7:05 p.m.