In what is only the second buzzer beater in the history of the Petersen Events Center (the first by Ronald Ramon to beat WVU), Ashton Gibbs sent the Panther faithful home happy.
Playing against a Providence team that had only managed 4 conference victories all season and that sits in second to last place in the Big East, the Panthers expected to run away with this victory on their home court. However, the Friars continually pressed all game and wound up forcing Pitt into an uncharachteristic 15 turnovers. Pitt withstood an early deficit and would even take a large 9 point lead at one point in the first half only to see their lead cut to three at the intermission. Trading buckets, it looked like whoever had the ball last was going to win this game. The panthers had the ball with almost no difference between the shot clock and game clock but Brad Wanamaker missed an attempt at the game winning shot and Pitt was whistled for a cheap foul. After Providence made one of the two free throws to take a one point lead, Pitt called its last time out. With only 3.5 seconds left and no way to advance the ball, Jamie Dixon gave the ball to the player who helped carry his US U-19 club, Ashton Gibbs. After dribbling the length of the floor and firing a shot halfway between the 3 point line and half court, Gibbs drained the game winner and was mobbed at center court by his teammates.
Jamine Peterson had a monster game for the Friars as Pitt had no answer for his 24 point, 18 rebound performance.
On the Pitt side of the ball, Ashton Gibbs hit 6 three pointers, including the game winner to finish with 25 points. He finished 9-13 andd 6-9 from downtown. Jermaine Dixon and Brad Wanamaker each finished with double doubles. Dixon seemed to get into the paint at will and finished with a career high 24 points and 12 rebounds. Wanamaker finished with 10 points and 13 assists.
This victory locked the Panthers into the top 4 in the Big East and gives them a double bye in the Big East tournament. It also allows the Panthers a shot to finish in second place in the conference if they beat Rutgers in their last game of the year and Villanova loses to West Virginia. The Panthers will only need to win 3 games in order to win the Big East tourney.
Pitt have play its final home game of the year on saturday against Rutgers in what will be senior day for Jermaine Dixon and Chase Adams.