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Pitt tops Louisville, reaches rarified air in ACC play

Nike Sibande scored 15 points off the bench and Greg Elliott added 14 to fuel host Pittsburgh to a convincing 91-57 victory over Louisville on Tuesday in an Atlantic Coast Conference game.

Sibande and Elliott each made four 3-pointers for the Panthers (17-7, 10-3), who have won four in a row and six of their past seven games to move into a tie with Clemson (18-6, 10-3) atop the ACC. Pitt also notched its first 10-win season in the conference since posting an 11-7 mark in 2013-14.

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Nelly Cummings, Blake Hinson and Guillermo Diaz Graham each finished with 11 points to help Pitt match its highest point total of the season, a 91-66 win over Sacred Heart on Dec. 10.

Pitt, which bolted out to a 47-27 lead at halftime, shot a robust 54.9 percent from the floor (28 of 51) and 54.8 percent from 3-point range (17 of 31) for the game. The Panthers also made 18 of 20 shots from the foul line.

Louisville’s Mike James made three 3-pointers and finished with 11 points. Hercy Miller added 10 points off the bench for the Cardinals (3-21, 1-12), who have lost 12 of their last 13 games.

Louisville forged a 14-14 tie before Pitt scored 24 of the next 27 points to take hold of the game. Elliott, Hinson, Cummings and Sibande each drained a 3-pointer and Nate Santos added a four-point play during that sequence.

The Cardinals countered by scoring the next five points before the Panthers responded with an 8-2 run. Federiko Federiko converted a layup and Sibande and Cummings each added a 3-pointer to push Pitt’s lead to 46-24 with 1:46 left in the first half.

The Panthers scored 16 of the first 19 points of the second half to effectively put the game away. Hinson, Cummings and Guillermo Diaz Graham each sank a 3-pointer to highlight that sequence and give Pitt a 63-30 lead.

–Field Level Media

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