The ‘Canes shook off some early rust, on their way to a convincing 67-53 win in Pittsburgh to begin ACC play. Early on the ‘Canes struggled from the field, opening up the game just 2-9 from the floor, but with just over 12 minutes left in the first half, Miami took their first lead of the game and only gave it up one time.
The defense was stellar as usual, holding the Panthers to just 1 point in the final 7+ minutes of the 1st half. Thanks to Anthony Lawrence’s 10 first half points the ‘Canes were able to open up a 30-19 lead heading into the break.
In the second half the ‘Canes came out hot, starting on an 8-3 run that forced Pitt to call an early timeout. The timeout didn’t do much to stop the bleeding as the clinic continued. At multiple times throughout the half, the ‘Canes opened up 20+ point leads, leading by as many as 21.
Though Pitt probably won’t pick up too many wins in ACC play, this is a great way to start conference play for a ‘Canes team that dropped all the way from 6 to 15 in the AP polls after losing to New Mexico State in Hawaii. There are no easy road games in ACC play, but Miami made this one look that way. The game never got closer than 13 in the second half, and the result was never in doubt.
Miami ended the game shooting 49% from the field and put up 40 points in the paint. 4 different ‘Canes scored in double figures, including Lawrence who lead the way with 12 points and 6 boards. But the best news may have been the ‘Canes performance from the free throw line, as Miami shot 8/9 for their best performance of the season.
The ‘Canes will travel to Georgia Tech on January 3rd where they will hope to continue their road domination and move to 2-0 in ACC play.