Pitt notebook: Woodall's injury 'changes complexion' of Panthers
If Pitt looked like a drastically different team against Marquette than the one that beat Georgetown by 28 points four nights earlier, it might have had something to do with the Panthers losing a prominent player.
Tray Woodall, Pitt's fifth-year senior point guard, sustained a concussion when he collided head-first with Golden Eagles guard Derrick Wilson at 16:30 of the first half of Pitt's 74-67 overtime loss to Marquette on Saturday at Petersen Events Center. Woodall did not return, and finished 0 for 1 from the field with one assist.
“We'll have to find out where he's at,” Pitt coach Jamie Dixon said. “The process in place is, even if he says he's fine, he'll be out for a certain amount of time, 48 hours. We'll see how he feels from there.”
Woodall's injury forced Dixon to play freshman James Robinson 36 minutes before fouling out, and use swingmen Lamar Patterson and Trey Zeigler at the point on occasion.
“Losing Woodall completely changes the complexion of their team,” Marquette coach Buzz Williams said. “I think that probably changed some of the things coach Dixon typically does. I think it changed their depth chart and how they rotate guys.”
Beaten on the boards
Dixon was more disappointed with Pitt getting outrebounded for the third time in four Big East games — all losses — than he was with the Panthers' paltry percentage at the free-throw line. Marquette had 38 rebounds to Pitt's 33, even though the Eagles had fewer offensive rebounds (14-11).
That Pitt made only 13 of 26 free throws was less disconcerting to Dixon because the Panthers were shooting 68.4 percent entering the game. Dixon said he views the rebounding as a continuing problem.
“Rebounding is something we've been stressing all along,” Dixon said. “You're going to have games where you don't shoot as well from the free-throw line. We're close to 70 percent. They shot higher than their percentage. We shot lower than our percentage. But the rebounding has to be a constant.”
Williams was at a loss in trying to explain how the Golden Eagles allowed Lamar Patterson to get so wide open for the game-tying 3-pointer in the final 1.2 seconds of regulation. Patterson drifted away from Trent Lockett, and Pitt guard James Robinson lofted a pass to him at the top of the key.
Williams called Lockett “the smartest player I have on the floor” but later added that “I don't know what Trent did. He just kind of froze.”
Williams knew this much after watching Patterson's uncontested shot beat the buzzer to tie the game at 57: “We looked like clowns.”
It was the first road victory this season for Marquette, which lost to Butler in the EA Sports Maui Invitational and at Florida and Green Bay. ... Pitt lost its second consecutive game at Petersen Events Center after Cincinnati snapped a 15-game home winning streak. ... The Panthers will play at Marquette Feb. 16. ... Pitt freshman center Steven Adams registered a career-high four blocked shots. He finished with four points and six rebounds in 29 minutes.
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