Inexperienced Pitt men's basketball falls to Navy in season opener
ANNAPOLIS, Md. — Junior-college transfer Jared Wilson-Frame scored 20 points, but Pitt couldn't overcome a cold-shooting second half and lost 71-62 to Navy on Friday night in the season-opening Veterans Classic.
Pitt missed its first 14 field goal attempts after halftime. Over the first 13 minutes of the second half, the Panthers were 5 for 20 from the floor and 0 for 9 from 3-point range.
“We might not be able to get the ball in the basket,” coach Kevin Stallings said, “but they will continue to play hard.”
The Midshipmen opened the second half with a 13-1 run to take a 52-39 lead and held off a late run by Pitt in the closing minutes.
The Panthers closed to 66-62 with 1 minute, 31 seconds left but didn't have enough poise to complete the comeback.
Wilson-Frame was at the free-throw line with a chance to get the Panthers within a basket, but he missed both shots. Shawn Anderson subsequently made two free throws on the other end, and three more Navy foul shots sealed it.
Navy finished with a 39-30 rebounding advantage.
“We have a slew of things to work on,” Stallings said.
Ryan Luther had 14 points and eight rebounds for the Panthers.
Bryce Dulin scored 18 points, and Anderson added 15 for Navy.
“It was huge. A win like this shows we have the potential to be a very good team,” said Anderson, who had nine rebounds and five assists in a team-high 33 minutes.
After Dulin scored 11 in the first half to help Navy take a 39-38 halftime lead, Hasan Abdullah began the second half by hitting successive 3s for a seven-point cushion.
Shamiel Stevenson sank a free throw for the Panthers before Anderson connected from beyond the arc and Mo Lewis added a jumper to make it 50-39.
The Panthers host Montana on Monday night in the Legends Classic.