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01/16/2013 9:46 PM EST
Pittsburgh closes strong to beat Villanova 58-43
PITTSBURGH 58, VILLANOVA 43

By DAN GELSTON
AP Basketball Writer

VILLANOVA, Pa. (AP) -- Durand Johnson and Trey Zeigler each
scored 13 points points to lead Pittsburgh to a 58-43 win over
Villanova on Wednesday night.



The Panthers (14-4, 2-3 Big East) snapped a tie game with a 15-0
run to end the game and they held Villanova without a point for
the final 5 minutes, 13 seconds.



The Panthers opened conference play with consecutive losses
before a 28-point win at Georgetown. The Panthers lost at home
the last time out to Marquette. They didn't play much better
against the Wildcats, missing 12 of 15 3-point attempts and
shooting 36 percent from the floor.



Against the struggling Wildcats, it was enough. Darrun Hilliard
scored all 14 of his points in the first half. The Wildcats
(11-6, 2-2) committed 18 turnovers.



With each team unable to score, the game was close, if not ugly.
James Bell's steal and bucket - off Pitt's 14th turnover - tied
the game at 43-all.



Villanova's tight double team nearly forced turnover No. 15, but
Zeigler found Steve Adams alone near the basket for the
uncontested dunk. Zeigler followed with a layup to make it a
four-point lead, and Villanova called timeout. Patterson, who
averaged 9.6 points, banked a runner for his first field goal of
the game and an eight-point lead, and the run was on.



The Wildcats would not score again after Bell's bucket.



Ryan Arcidiacono's short jumper gave Villanova a 32-25 lead and
got a rise out of the usually staid crowd. The Wildcats, coming
off a loss at Syracuse, just never found their shooting touch.
They followed an eight-basket first half with only six in the
second, hardly a recipe for a win.



Tray Woodall scored eight points for Pitt. In Pitt's last game,
Woodall's head smacked into the knee of Marquette's Derrick
Wilson while scrambling for a loose ball, and he didn't return.



The Wildcats couldn't shoot or hold onto the ball for most of
the first half. At one point, the Wildcats had eight turnovers
and only four field goals, one reason Pitt pulled ahead thanks
to a 9-0 run.



Hilliard, though, kept them afloat with defensive hustle and
sharp shooting beyond the arc. He hit all three of his 3-point
attempts and was active on defense. He turned a steal at the top
of Pittsburgh's key into a three-point play. On his next steal,
he found Arcidiacono in transition for a 3-pointer that put
Villanova ahead 23-22 at the break.



This was the final Big East matchup at Villanova between the two
intrastate rivals before the Panthers bolt for the ACC next
season.

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