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Updated: Saturday, February 12, 2005 4:10 PM EST
NCAA BASKETBALL RECAP
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(15) Pittsburgh 68, Notre Dame 66

PITTSBURGH (Ticker) -- Carl Krauser wanted the ball when the game was on the line.

Krauser's driving layup with 9.6 seconds remaining lifted 15th-ranked Pittsburgh to a 68-66 Big East Conference victory over Notre Dame.

"I knew once I got into the lane, I would have a shot or get up a shot where my guys were in good rebounding position," said Krauser, who finished with 16 points after a slow start.

"You have to give Krauser credit," Notre Dame coach Mike Brey added. "He's a winner. He makes big plays. That's his style. He made the big one when everything was on the line."

The Panthers survived a stellar game from Chris Quinn, who matched a career high with 25 points. Quinn made his last seven shots, including a 23-footer that tied the game for the final time with 41 seconds left.

"We battled through some things," Pittsburgh coach Jamie Dixon said. "Their outside shooting was there, which is always there. They shoot it well from the three and shoot a lot of them, which spaces you out and it's hard to guard."

On the ensuing possession, Pittsburgh (17-4, 7-4 Big East) got the ball to Krauser, who drove into the lane and made a runner over the outstretched arms of Rick Cornett to put the Panthers ahead.

"Chevy (Troutman) set a great screen to get him open," Dixon said. We're getting a lot of great things from Carl - the things we've been getting from him all year. He battled for every loose ball and rebound."

On its following possession, Notre Dame (14-7, 6-5) got the ball inside to Cornett, who was fouled. But Cornett, who has made just 6-of-20 free throws this season, could only split a pair to make it 67-66 with 4.3 seconds.

After Ronald Ramon converted 1-of-2 from the line for the Panthers with 2.8 seconds left, Notre Dame had a final chance, but time expired after the Fighting Irish threw away the inbounds pass.

Notre Dame stayed in the game by making 14 3-pointers - five by Quinn and four by Chris Thomas, who scored 16 points.

In a game with numerous momentum swings, Notre Dame erased an early 30-17 deficit and grabbed a 49-44 lead on Thomas' 3-pointer with 12:53 remaining. But it was feast or famine for Notre Dame, which did not make a two-point basket in the second half until just 2:47 remained.

The Fighting Irish were 14-of-29 (48 percent) from 3-point range and just 9-of-28 (32 percent) from inside the arc.

"We really couldn't establish an inside game," Brey said. "They brought a lot of big bodies on us and were very physical."

Ramon contributed 13 points off the bench for the Panthers, including a four-point play that put Pittsburgh ahead, 51-50, with 9:25 remaining. It started an 11-0 spurt as the Panthers stretched their lead to 58-50 on Troutman's two free throws with 7:05 left.

Again Notre Dame responded as Quinn scored six straight points to give the Fighting Irish a 62-61 lead with 1:59 remaining.

Krauser answered with a 3-pointer with 1:37 left, the eighth lead change of the second half. Troutman, who also scored 13 points, hit 1-of-2 from the line to make it 65-62 with 1:05 to play.


© 2005 STATS, Inc
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