NEW YORK (AP) -- Carl Krauser, replacing four-year starter
Brandin Knight at point guard, scored a career-high 21 points and
No. 22 Pittsburgh beat Alabama 71-62 Friday night in the Coaches
vs. Cancer Classic.
Jamie Dixon got the win in his first game as head coach of the
Panthers. He replaced former boss Ben Howland, who went to UCLA
after four seasons at Pittsburgh.
The Panthers struggled from 3-point range, missing their first
13 tries before Krauser finally hit one from beyond the arc to give
the Panthers a 39-35 lead with 11:08 to play. They didn't quite
catch on fire from long range, but they did make three in a 2:40
span to go up 59-53 with 2:10 left.
The last of the 3-pointers was by Jaron Brown and that was
Pittsburgh's last field goal of the game. The Panthers made the
lead stand up by going 12-for-16 from the free throw line the rest
of the way.
The win was Pittsburgh's fourth straight at Madison Square
Garden, where it won the Big East tournament for the first time
Chuck Davis, one of Alabama's young players looking to claim one
of the four starting spots left open from last season, had a
career-high 20 points. He averaged 1.5 points last season as a
freshman with a high of five points against North Carolina
Krauser averaged 6.0 points last season as a freshman with a
high of 14 against Georgia.
Antoine Pettway had 17 points for Alabama, which played in this
event last season and upset then-No. 3 Oklahoma on the way to the
school's first-ever No. 1 ranking.
Pittsburgh, which won its seventh straight season opener,
finished 4-for-20 from 3-point range and 21-for-33 from the free
Alabama was 3-for-14 on 3s and 15-for-23 from the foul line.