Bucknell 69

(9-4, 6-2 away)

(10) Pittsburgh 66

(10-1, 9-1 home)

    7:00 PM ET, January 2, 2005

    Petersen Events Center, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

    1 2 T
    BUCK 42 2769
    #10PITT 33 3366

    Top Performers

    Bucknell: C. McNaughton 17 Pts, 4 Reb, 1 Stl, 1 Blk

    Pittsburgh: C. Taft 19 Pts, 5 Reb, 1 Stl, 3 Blk

    Pitt's 48-game non-conference win streak snapped

    PITTSBURGH (AP) -- Bucknell coach Pat Flannery knew the win over Pittsburgh (No.7 ESPN/USA Today; No. 10 AP) on Sunday night was obviously one of the biggest in school history. He just wasn't able to rank it right away.

    Kevin Bettencourt made two free throws with 23 seconds remaining to give the Bison the lead in a 69-66 victory.

    "I don't know where to put it," Flannery said. "You don't play these games on your schedule without thinking you can come in and beat them. I felt like we could come in and play with them. I'll put it in perspective when I calm down."

    Chris McNaughton scored 17 points, Charles Lee had 14, including the last two free throws with 2.3 seconds left, and Bettencourt added 13 for Bucknell (9-4), which has won six straight, the last against the highest-ranked opponent in school history.

    "It's a lot of fun to play a game like that," McNaughton said. "To end up winning, it's just tremendous for us. The way we played as a team made the difference."

    Carl Krauser had 20 points for Pitt (10-1), which had a 48-game home winning streak against non-conference teams snapped.

    "We were ready for the game, but when we got here, it was a different story," Krauser said. "They came out blazing and we didn't step up to the challenge as well as we should have. Everyone hates to lose a game like this. It's an eye-opener."

    The last time Bucknell defeated Pittsburgh was Jan 11, 1975, when the Bison were coached by Jim Valvano. That was Bucknell's last victory over a current Big East team.

    It was Bucknell's second straight road upset as the Bison defeated defending Atlantic 10 champion Saint Joseph's 69-62 on Tuesday. The last time the Bison won six consecutive non-conference games was 1958-59.

    "Our guys were well aware of how good they were coming in," Pitt coach Jamie Dixon said. "It was one of those nights as far as how we played. But our defense is not where it needs to be."

    Chris Taft had 19 points for Pitt, which trailed by nine points at halftime. Freshman Ronald Ramon sparked a second-half comeback for Pitt, hitting consecutive 3-pointers to complete a 14-1 run and give the Panthers a 51-50 lead.

    Bucknell held a four-point lead with 3:50 left, but Antonio Graves and Krauser hit 3-pointers to give Pitt a 64-62 lead with 2 minutes left.

    Bettencourt converted a three-point play with 1:37 left to give Bucknell a 65-64 lead. Krauser answered with a basket on Pitt's next possession, putting the Panthers back on top, 66-65.

    But Krauser had a fastbreak layup blocked by Abe Badmus with 58 seconds left, and Graves was called for a foul away from the ball with 23 seconds remaining.

    Bettencourt converted both free throws to give Bucknell a 67-66 lead.

    "We did a great job of keeping our composure down the stretch," Bettencourt said.

    On Pitt's next possession, Krauser slipped while trying to drive the lane and was called for traveling. But Pitt got the ball back with 13 seconds left when Bucknell turned it over on the inbounds pass.

    Graves missed a 15-footer with 5 seconds left. Lee then made the two free throws and Krauser's desperation shot at the buzzer bounced off the glass. It was Pitt's second loss in its three seasons in the Petersen Events Center.

    Bucknell was 14-of-16 from the free throw line, with Bettencourt going 9-of-10. Pitt was only 9-of-20 from the line.

    Pitt was trying to complete its second consecutive unbeaten non-conference season. The Panthers went 14-0 in non-conference play last year and had won 25 consecutive non-league games since a Dec. 31, 2002, loss at Georgia. At home, Pitt had won 48 consecutive regular-season non-conference games, its last loss coming Dec. 23, 1999, against Virginia Commonwealth.

    In the first half, Bucknell scored 23 points off 15 turnovers in taking a 42-33 lead. It was the most first-half points allowed by the Panthers this season.

    "That's embarrassing," said Taft, who had five turnovers. "I know that won't ever happen again."

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


    Team Stat Comparison

    Points 69 66
    FG Made-Attempted 24-47 (.511) 24-46 (.522)
    3P Made-Attempted 7-18 (.389) 9-17 (.529)
    FT Made-Attempted 14-16 (.875) 9-20 (.450)
    Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 21 (0/0) 17 (0/0)
    Largest Lead 12 2

    2004-05 Season

    » Jan 2, 2005 BUCK 69, @PITT 66Recap