Men's Basketball, Sports, WVU Sports

Blake Hinson made 9 of Pitt’s 16 threes as Panthers notch first Brawl win since 2012

MORGANTOWN — It rained inside the Coliseum Wednesday.

No precipitation, just 3-pointers from Pitt forward Blake Hinson and his Panthers teammates.

“I think we all know the story, Blake Hinson,” was the way WVU head coach Josh Eilert began his postgame press conference following Pitt’s 80-63 victory. “He rattled us for sure.”

He rattled the Mountaineers (3-5) with a record performance. He hit nine 3-pointers on his way to 29 points. The nine tied a record for most by a single player against WVU, tying the mark set by Buffalo’s C.J. Massingburg in 2018 and Marshall’s Tamar Slay in 2000.

Some of them were simply unreal. One came from Hardy County, not literally, but that was the spot on the state outline at midcourt Hinson hit one from.

Another came from a good 30 feet away, as he got the ball coming off a screen and stepped back and let it fly.

The senior, who leads the ACC in 3-point makes, really must have been feeling it, right?
“I’m always feeling it,” he said, not joking one bit.

The Panthers (6-2), too, were feeling it. Pitt, which ended a six-game losing streak to the Mountaineers with the win, finished with 16 3-pointers in all.

In the process, Pitt became just the sixth team in WVU’s history to make that many shots from behind the arc in a single game.

“That’s who we are,” Pitt coach Jeff Capel said. “You know, I think we can shoot the basketball. We haven’t shot it well in the last four games, but this is more of who I think we can be.

“More importantly, I thought we really did a great job of moving the basketball and sharing. In the first half, we missed some and we got some clean looks, but we want to take good shots. We want to generate good shots, and we live with the results.”

On this night, it was rather easy for the Panthers to live with the results. They made nine 3-pointers in the first half to take a slim 36-35 lead.

In the second half, every one of Pitt’s seven threes seemingly just put another nail into WVU’s coffin.
Along the way, Pitt handed WVU its first 20-point deficit of the season.

Hinson’s nine 3-pointers were six more than WVU had as an entire team.

“I mean, he was 9 of 15 from three,” WVU forward Quinn Slazinski said. “Most people don’t hit that many when they’re open. We had guys right there and he still made them.

“You have to give the guy credit. That’s one of the best shooting performances I’ve ever seen. He played great.”

Pitt freshman Carlton Carrington added three more and so did Guillermo Diaz Graham.

One of Carrington’s 3-pointers came while he was off balanced and standing on one foot.

“We didn’t make them uncomfortable whatsoever,” Eilert said. “The game is all about momentum and confidence. Last year, we had that at their house and fed off it.

“They saw shots fall early (on Wednesday) and they built that confidence. That momentum snowballed in their direction.”

Carrington finished with 16 points and nine assists for the Panthers.

Slazinski led the Mountaineers with 22 points and Jesse Edwards added 20 points and nine rebounds.

Pittsburgh 80, West Virginia 63
Austin 0-3 0-0 0, Hinson 10-19 0-0 29, Federiko 0-1 0-0 0, Carrington 6-13 1-1 16, Leggett 3-7 4-4 10, Jeffress 0-2 1-2 1, G.Diaz Graham 6-7 0-0 15, J.Diaz Graham 1-6 0-0 3, Lowe 3-4 0-0 6. Totals 29-62 6-7 80.
Harris 0-5 1-2 1, Naveh 5-13 0-0 11, Slazinski 6-11 9-10 22, Edwards 8-11 4-4 20, Johnson 2-7 2-2 6, Wilson 1-3 0-0 3, Akok 0-2 0-0 0, Suemnick 0-1 0-0 0, Bembry 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 22-53 16-18 63.
Halftime—Pittsburgh 36-35. 3-Point Goals—Pittsburgh 16-38 (Hinson 9-15, G.Diaz Graham 3-4, Carrington 3-8, J.Diaz Graham 1-5, Jeffress 0-1, Leggett 0-2, Austin 0-3), West Virginia 3-20 (Wilson 1-3, Slazinski 1-4, Naveh 1-5, Akok 0-1, Edwards 0-1, Johnson 0-1, Suemnick 0-1, Harris 0-4). Rebounds—Pittsburgh 31 (Jeffress 9), West Virginia 30 (Edwards 9). Assists—Pittsburgh 12 (Carrington 9), West Virginia 11 (Johnson 4). Total Fouls—Pittsburgh 17, West Virginia 13.