Fields' heroics lift Pitt past Xavier
Just never so late in the month of March.
The senior dug in his spade with 50.9 seconds left, draining a clutch three-pointer from the top of the arc that would permanently put Pitt ahead, 55-54. On the very next play -- his pick-pocketing of Xavier's
"I never get tired of watching Levance take big shots," Panthers coach
After falling short in seven straight NCAA tournament appearances, top-seeded Pitt now goes to its first Elite Eight since 1974 (when it was blown out by eventual champion North Carolina State and
"It's something that everybody has been waiting for, for a long time," said forward
Young is absolutely right about that last part: a Thursday night win [
What changed for Blair between frames? For a fellow whose powerful backside recently triggered an allusion to
Blair had disappeared. Fields (six points, three assists) looked unsteady and unimpressive next to fellow senior Young (11 points on 5-of-8 shooting). But then everything aligned, and the Panthers re-unleashed the best trio in college hoops. "When us three are clicking," Blair said, "it's tough for us to be beat."
Fields only scored 14 points (to go along with six assists), but there is no debate here. (Let's also remember that the Brooklyn native beat Duke with a step-back three in Dec. 2007 with 4.7 seconds remaining in overtime.) "Levance loves that moment," Pitt assistant coach
In fact, given an answer this obvious, I would also like to note that I was further impressed at how correct
Talk about a costly turnover. With 7:45 left in the first half, Fields threw a looping, sideline-to-sideline pass that sailed high and utterly obliterated the MacBook Pro of an ill-fated journalist from
Villanova, which is a shame for Pitt. Blair would have eaten the Blue Devils' entire frontcourt as an appetizer, but the Wildcats -- who already beat the Panthers 67-57 in late January, in Philly -- got there first. The story come Saturday should be how the Big Three handles 'Nova's depth; tonight, six Wildcats scored seven points or more. (Perhaps frighteningly for Pitt, star sixth man