SYRACUSE, N.Y. -- — Ithiel Horton scored 14 points, Au’diese Toney made a go-ahead putback with eight seconds left for Pittsburgh's first lead and the shorthanded Panthers erased an 18-point deficit to beat Syracuse 63-60 on Wednesday, snapping a seven-game losing streak in the series.
After Toney put Pittsburgh ahead, Syracuse dribbled across midcourt and called a timeout with 5.2 seconds left. But the Orange then turned it over, Xavier Johnson made two free throws for a three-point lead and Alan Griffin's half-court heave at the buzzer hit the side of the rim.
Pittsburgh started the game making just three of its first 19 shots from the field as Syracuse built a 28-10 lead at the 6:34 mark. The Panthers finished the half 6-of-28 shooting (21.4%) and trailed 32-18 before starting the second half on a 13-3 run to get within 35-31.
Toney finished with a double-double, scoring 10 points and grabbing 13 rebounds for Pittsburgh (6-2, 2-1 ACC). Johnson also scored 10, becoming the 47th player in program history to reach 1,000 career points. Pittsburgh outrebounded Syracuse 41-29.
Pitt had three players and one staff member not travel to Syracuse due to COVID-related protocols. The Panthers were also without Justin Champagnie, averaging 17.8 points per game and 12.3 rebounds, due to a knee injury.
Griffin had 15 points, eight rebounds, four assists and three steals for Syracuse (6-2, 1-1). Robert Braswell scored a career-high 12 points.
Syracuse hadn’t played since beating Buffalo 107-96 in overtime on Dec. 19. Pittsburgh’s previous game was a 64-54 loss to Louisville on Dec. 22.
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Southern Illinois (12-13, 6-13) vs. No. 1 seed Loyola of Chicago (21-4, 16-2)
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Vanderbilt (8-14, 3-12) vs. Mississippi (14-10, 9-8)