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Dec 19, 2001%^$

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%^$%^$Box Score|%^$Quotes|%^$Notes%^$%^$

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%^$Postgame audio:
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Head Coach Jim O’Brien
%^$ Pitt Head Coach Ben Howland%^$

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By RUSTY MILLER
AP Sports Writer
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COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) – Donatas Zavackas hit eight free throws in the final%^$1:03 and Pittsburgh ended the game with an 18-5 run as the Panthers beat Ohio%^$State 62-55 on Wednesday night.%^$

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The Panthers (10-1), off to their best start in 11 years, controlled the%^$boards and completely shut down Ohio State’s offense in their first road game%^$of the season. They held a 38-26 rebounding advantage and dominated in%^$offensive rebounding during a 15-0 stretch run.%^$

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The Buckeyes lost their second in a row after opening with six wins.%^$

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Zavackas, who finished with 12 points, hit 8-of-10 free throws as the%^$Panthers scored all of their points in the final 3 minutes from the line. The%^$Panthers had made just 7-of-19 free throws before Zavackas stepped to the line%^$with 1:03 left.%^$

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Julius Page led Pittsburgh with 17 points with Ontario Lett scoring 15 off%^$the bench. Brandin Knight added seven assists, eight points and six rebounds.%^$

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Pittsburgh, leading the nation in scoring defense at 52.8 points a game,%^$have held nine of their first 11 opponents under 60 points. Ohio State came in%^$averaging 77.3 points a game.%^$

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Brian Brown had 12 points and Zach Williams and Velimir Radinovich each had%^$10 for Ohio State, coming off a 66-61 loss at Louisville on Saturday.%^$

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Ohio State led 14-5 at the outset, hitting 7 of its first 10 shots from the%^$field.%^$

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The Panthers, however, controlled the next 12 minutes, going on a 23-7 run.%^$The Buckeyes were on top 19-17 after Brandon Fuss-Cheatham’s perimeter jumper%^$with 8:04 left in the half, but didn’t score again until Radinovic hit a layup%^$at the 2:52 mark. By then, Pittsburgh had built a 27-19 lead with a 10-0 run.%^$Orlando Lett scored six points in that mini-spurt.%^$

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The Buckeyes trailed 28-24 at the half but quickly overcame that with an 8-0%^$run that gave them a 34-32 advantage on Williams’ turnaround jumper in the%^$lane.%^$

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Ohio State led 44-36 on Fuss-Cheatham’s bucket at the 11:51 mark and was%^$still ahead 50-44 after Brent Darby’s perimeter shot with 5:50 left.%^$

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But the Buckeyes missed their next nine shots from the field and Pittsburgh%^$- which finished with 17 offensive rebounds – continually got second chances at%^$the offensive end.%^$

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The Panthers pulled even on Lett’s foul shot with 3:37 remaining and took%^$the lead for good on Page’s turnaround at the 3-minute mark.%^$

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They ran off 15 consecutive points to build the lead to 59-50 until Brown%^$scored on a follow with 13.2 seconds left.%^$

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Despite hot starts in each half, Ohio State ended up shooting 45.3 percent%^$(24 of 53) from the field.