K-State Falls to Pitt, 70-47, to End Maui Trip

LAHAINA, MAUI, Hawai’i – Pittsburgh connected on 55.3 percent from the field, including 65.2 percent in the second half, to post a 70-47 win over Kansas State in the third place game of the EA Sports Maui Invitational on Wednesday before a sold-out crowd of 2,400 at the Lahaina Civic Center.


Final Score: Pittsburgh 70, Kansas State 47
Records: Kansas State (3-3, 0-0 Big 12); Pittsburgh (4-2, 0-0 ACC)
Attendance: 2,400 (sold out)
Next Game: Tuesday, Dec. 2 \\ vs. Nebraska-Omaha \\ 7 p.m. CT \\ FOX Sports Kansas City

The Short Story
•    Pittsburgh blew open a tight game early in the second half, out-scoring Kansas State, 11-3, to push the lead to double figures in an eventual 23-point victory.
•    The Panthers led for the last 26:21 of the game and never trailed after breaking a 20-all tie with a 3-pointer by Ryan Luther with 5:01 left in the first half.
•    Pittsburgh out-scored K-State, 40-20, in the second half and held the Wildcats to just 26.1 percent (6-of-23) shooting, including 16.7 percent (1-of-6) from beyond the arc, after halftime.
•    Four Pittsburgh players scored in double figures led by James Robinson’ 14.
•    K-State set season-lows for points (47), field goals (15) and field goal percentage (32.6).
•    Senior Thomas Gipson was the lone Wildcat in double figures with 13. He has now scored in double figures in 13 of the last 15 games, including four times this season.
•    Pittsburgh held a 34-22 edge in the paint and got 28 points from its bench.
•    For the first time this season, K-State lost the points-off-turnover battle. Pittsburgh scored 17 points off of 15 K-State turnovers, while the Wildcats managed just 10 points off of 15 miscues.

How It Happened  |  First Half
•    K-State won the opening tip and jumped out quickly, scoring the game’s first six points, and building a 10-3 lead at the 15:41 mark of the first half.
•    Head coach Bruce Weber subbed out his entire starting five and Pittsburgh quickly scored six straight points to close to within 10-9 after a jumper by Sheldon Jeter at the 13:21 mark.
•    After K-State extended the lead to 14-11 on a jumper by Nino Williams, Pittsburgh tied the game on a3-pointer by Ryan Luther then took its first lead at 16-14 on a lay-up by James Robinson.
•    Williams tied it at 20-all with a pair of free throws, but another Luther 3-pointer gave Pittsburgh the lead for good at 23-20 with 5:01 remaining and ignited a 10-2 run that made it 30-22 at the 1:22 mark.
•    K-State was able to close the gap to 30-27 at halftime with five straight points to end the half.
•    Pittsburgh connected on 45.8 percent (11-of-24) from the field, including 57.1 percent (4-of-7) from 3-point range, in the first half, while K-State shot 39.1 percent (9-of-23), including 14.3 percent (1-of-7) from beyond the arc. The Panthers out-scored the Wildcats, 13-2, from the bench.
•    Gipson led all Wildcat scorers with nine points in the first half.

How It Happened  |  Second Half
•    Pittsburgh opened the second half with an 8-1 run to build the lead to 38-28 at the 15:03 mark before Justin Edwards recorded K-State’s first field goal at the 14:43 mark after five straight misses.
•    The Panthers built the lead back out to double figures at 41-30 on another 3-pointer by Luther with 14:07 remaining.
•    K-State would close to within 49-41 on a lay-up by Edwards, but the Wildcats could get no closer.
•    Pittsburgh scored 21 of the last 27 points to end the game.

Beyond the Boxscore
•    With the loss, K-State is now 93-24 in non-conference play since 2006-07… The Wildcats are now 24-8 in non-conference play, including 5-5 in-season tournament play, under head coach Bruce Weber.
•    K-State is now 3-5 all-time in Maui Invitational play.
•    Pittsburgh claims the first meeting between the schools on the hardwood.
•    K-State is now 12-20 all-time against the ACC, including 6-14 on neutral courts.
•    K-State is now 0-3 on the season when trailing at the half.

Quotable
•    “Not much we can say. Obviously we're disappointed. They just out toughed us. I thought we got off to a good start. I thought a key was going to be our bench because we had played two very, very hard fought games the last two days. We used a lot of energy, so I thought the bench would be key. So probably put too many guys in at one time where we were up 10-4 or something, and they made the run to get it back. We never really got going again. They just had more toughness, more will to win, competitive spirit. We've got to go home and learn a lot about our team, and see we can make some strides,” said head coach Bruce Weber.

Up Next
•    After a nine-day road trip, Kansas State returns to the friendly confines of Bramlage Coliseum on Tuesday, Dec. 2, as the Wildcats play host to Nebraska-Omaha at 7 p.m. The game will be broadcast on FOX Sports Kansas City with Ben Boyle (play-by-play) and Stan Weber (analyst) on the call.