PITTSBURGH (Ticker) -- After early-season dominance against inferior opponents and past success against Duquesne, Pittsburgh may have been caught looking ahead to its matchup with Memphis on Tuesday. The look-ahead lasted only one half.
Chris Taft led four players in double figures with 16 points as No. 6 Pittsburgh shook off a listless first half and rolled to an 87-57 victory over cross-town rival Duquesne in the "City" Game.
"I think one of our answers in this game was getting the ball inside, and it all starts with our passing inside and getting that inside look," Pittsburgh coach Jamie Dixon said. "We did that. Antonio (Graves) did a good job getting the ball inside. Getting the ball inside, initially, gave (Taft) some open looks."
The Panthers, who won their first four games by an average of 27.5 points and had beaten the Dukes in 22 of their last 25 meetings, held just a 37-31 lead at halftime.
But Pittsburgh (5-0) came out with more intensity in the second half and outscored Duquesne (1-7), 50-26. The Panthers opened the half on a 21-8 run to take a 58-39 lead.
"I thought our guys performed very well in a big game that means a lot to a lot of people," Dixon said. "I thought our guys adjusted to a lot of things.
"We anticipated coming in that they would be changing defenses, and we adjusted throughout the game and recognized the double teams, and the doubling in the post. I think the turnovers speak for themselves. We had 20 assists and 10 turnovers. So our passing was very good and we recognized early the good shot from the great shot."
The Panthers shot 52 percent (33-of-63) for the game and was 19-of-32 in the second half.
Pittsburgh, noted for its tough defense, limited Duquesne to 37 percent (22-of-59) shooting and forced 18 turnovers in limiting its fifth straight opponent to less than 60 points.
"They (Pitt players) are very tough and rugged and picked this program right up where it left off," Duquesne coach Danny Nee said. "Jamie (Dixon) has done a great job with his starting five. They're not missing a beat. He is a very, very good coach.
"Ben (Howland, who left for UCLA after the 2002-03 season) laid the foundation and how Pitt plays. It's very defined; the offense has remained the same. There are no surprises. They are just very efficient and they move very well. And that's a compliment to the coaching staff."
Chevy Troutman, who had 22 points and 13 rebounds against St. Francis on Wednesday, had 15 and 11 in this one. Carl Krauser scored 10 of his 15 points in the second half and Graves had career highs of 12 points and six assists for Pittsburgh, which has won 20 straight games against non-conference opponents.
Jack Higgins scored 17 points for Duquesne, which has lost six in a row. The Dukes kept the game close in the first half due to a 20-15 edge on the boards and 11 points and three 3-pointers by reserve Jack Higgins. The Dukes got 19 points from the bench in the opening 20 minutes.
Bryant McAllister, who entered the game averaging 15.3 points per game for Duquesne, was held to 11 points on 4-of-12 shooting.