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(Sunday, January 31st)
Final Score: South Florida 70, (17) Pittsburgh 61
Tampa, FL (Sports Network) - Dominique Jones scored 37 points and Chris Howard added 13, leading South Florida to a 70-61 victory over 17th-ranked Pittsburgh at the USF Sun Dome.
Jones made 10-of-20 from the field and drained 14-of-17 free throws for the Bulls (14-7, 4-5 Big East), who have won three straight games. South Florida, which beat both Providence and Seton Hall in overtime for its first-ever Big East win streak, will take another step up in competition with a visit to Georgetown on Wednesday.
"That's a big, big win. That's a really good basketball team we faced," USF head coach Stan Heath said. "I thought before the game in order for us to have a chance we'd have to rebound well and not turn it over very much. We squeaked by in both of those areas."
Gilbert Brown scored 25 points to lead Pittsburgh (16-5, 6-3), which has lost three of its last four on the heels of an eight-game winning streak. Brad Wanamaker added 14 points in defeat.
South Florida opened an 8-3 lead early and went on to build an 11-point margin at 22-11 on a three-pointer by Jones with 7:40 to play in the first half. Pittsburgh responded with 11 straight points and tied it on a Gary McGhee basket with just over four minutes left.
The Bulls, though, answered with the next seven points and went to the break with a 31-26 lead. Brown's jumper in the closing seconds pulled the Panthers within five.
USF stretched its lead to 51-37 midway through the second half, but Pittsburgh didn't quit and drew within 53-49 with 6 1/2 minutes remaining on a dunk by Wanamaker.
The Bulls, however, never let the Panthers get closer. A jumper by Jones extended the USF advantage to 59-52 with 3:39 to play and Pittsburgh got only as close as five from there.
"Congratulations to South Florida," Pittsburgh head coach Jamie Dixon said. "It was a good win for them, they deserve to win and obviously a couple of things stand out. You look at the numbers and simply put we didn't get it done so congratulations to them and the win."
South Florida committed just five turnovers...Ashton Gibbs scored 11 for the Panthers...South Florida improved to 3-3 all-time against Pittsburgh, but beat the Panthers for the first time in four tries as a Big East member...The Bulls also improved to 4-20 against ranked teams since joining the conference...Pitt will visit West Virginia on Wednesday.
01/31 17:28:57 ET