Duquesne 57

(1-7, 0-4 away)

(13) Pittsburgh 87

(5-0, 5-0 home)

    4:00 PM ET, December 4, 2004

    Petersen Events Center, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

    1 2 T
    DUQ 31 2657
    #13PITT 37 5087

    Top Performers

    Duquesne: J. Higgins 17 Pts, 1 Reb, 1 Ast, 1 Stl

    Pittsburgh: C. Troutman 15 Pts, 11 Reb, 1 Ast, 3 Blk

    Pittsburgh starts 5-0 for fifth straight season

    PITTSBURGH (AP) -- Chris Taft and Carl Krauser agree Pittsburgh (No. 14 ESPN/USA Today; No. 13 AP) is getting hungry for some competition. The Panthers certainly won't find it in their own city.

    Taft and Chevon Troutman controlled the inside and Krauser led unbeaten Pittsburgh's improved guard play in an 87-57 victory over city rival Duquesne on Saturday.

    Taft had 16 points, Troutman added 15 points and 11 rebounds and Krauser scored 15 points to help Pittsburgh start 5-0 against easy competition for the fifth consecutive season and the second time under coach Jamie Dixon.

    Pittsburgh won its 20th consecutive non-conference game and has an average winning margin of 28 points against Howard, Robert Morris, Loyola (Md.), St. Francis (Pa.) and Duquesne.

    "Our practices are way better than our games right now," Taft said. "With the competition we're playing against, our practices are more fun to watch."

    Pittsburgh figures to get tested for the first time Tuesday in New York against Memphis, a Top 25 team before losing to Maryland and Syracuse.

    "I see it as a disadvantage for them," Krauser said, referring to Memphis' far-tougher schedule. "They've already had a good slice of pie, and we're really hungry. We're going to Madison Square Garden to win."

    Pitt is at home for 10 of its first 12 before Big East play starts in January, leaving only to play Memphis and Penn State (Dec. 11).

    "We want to play all the good teams, and Memphis is one of them," Taft said. "Nothing against the competition we're playing, but we're hungry for a good team."

    The inside dominance of Troutman and Taft never allowed Duquesne (1-7) to consistently get the ball inside, repeatedly forcing the Dukes to settle for contested outside shots. Duquesne went 8-of-25 from 3-point range to 10-of-20 for Pittsburgh, which has improved its outside shooting after finishing 320th among the 326 Division I teams from beyond the arc last season.

    "It's a big relief knowing those guys (Taft and Troutman) can pass it like they can," Krauser said. "When they get double teamed, they're moving it around."

    Pitt is shooting 41 percent from 3-point range compared to 30.6 percent last season, when its weak outside shooting ultimately doomed it to a third consecutive loss in the NCAA round of 16.

    Duquesne tried to keep it close, getting to 24-21 with just over five minutes left in the first half after trailing 10-3 and 22-11. But Pitt went on a 9-0 run, finished off by Taft's dunk with 11:27 remaining, and the Panthers increasingly built their lead after that.

    "I'm looking forward to playing them next year because three of those guys (Taft, Troutman, Krauser) will be in the NBA and we won't have to deal with them any more," Duquesne coach Danny Nee said. "That's going to make it a lot easier than it is right now, because they are awfully good."

    Jack Higgins scored 17 points in a reserve role for Duquesne -- the fifth consecutive Pitt opponent to score fewer than 60 points -- while Kieron Achara had 13 and Bryant McAllister scored 11. Antonio Graves had 12 points for Pitt, which previously beat the city's other Division I team, Robert Morris, 83-59.

    "We tried the best we could, but were basically overmatched," McAllister said of Duquesne, which dropped its sixth straight.

    In a 72-year-old rivalry that regularly attracted crowds of 15,000-plus to the Civic Arena in the early 1980s, Pittsburgh won for the fourth consecutive season and the 23rd time in 26 games. Duquesne had a 28-18 edge before Pitt took control about the time the Panthers joined the Big East in 1982.

    Duquesne has dropped its last 15 against Top 25 teams since beating then-No. 16 Xavier 78-70 in Cincinnati on Jan. 25, 1997.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


    Team Stat Comparison

    Points 57 87
    FG Made-Attempted 22-59 (.373) 33-63 (.524)
    3P Made-Attempted 8-25 (.320) 10-20 (.500)
    FT Made-Attempted 5-6 (.833) 11-13 (.846)
    Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 15 (0/0) 11 (0/0)
    Largest Lead 1 30

    2004-05 Season

    » Dec 4, 2004 @PITT 87, DUQ 57Recap