With 1:34 left and the score 64-all, Pitt decided to play for the final shot at Penn State. But with six seconds to go the Panthers lost the ball on a traveling violation. State inbounded to Ron Brown, who faked around Billy Knight and arched a 30-foot jumper that went through the net as the buzzer sounded. Thus was the nation's longest winning streak ended at 22. Brown, who hit on 14 of 20 field-goal attempts and finished with 32 points, was also tenacious on defense. While the rest of the Lions played a zone, Brown guarded Knight, limiting him to 12 points. Earlier, Pitt had made 11 of 12 foul shots in the last four minutes to hold off Temple 56-49 and Penn State beat West Virginia 83-63 behind Brown's 22 points.
"There isn't much you can do when he wants to play," said Rhode Island Coach Jack Kraft of Providence's Marvin Barnes. For a while it seemed that Barnes, the country's leading rebounder, was loath to play against the Rams. But after being tardy for pregame warmups, Barnes grabbed 23 rebounds and scored 23 of his 32 points in the second half as the Friars won another close one, 76-73. Kraft's postmortem: "It should be illegal for anyone to jump that high." Three nights later Barnes was the first Friar on court for warmups and had 23 points and 21 rebounds in a 112-86 win over Assumption.
"Their defense was immense," said Brown Coach Gerry Alaimo after losing an 89-72 game and a share of the Ivy League lead to Penn. Supplying much of the Quakers' oats was John Engles, who popped in 10 of 15 shots and had 22 points. Penn solidified its grip on first place by halting Yale 90-79 while Brown lost another, this one to Princeton's even more immense defense, 70-49.
About the only thing La Salle did wrong against Villanova was to show up with the wrong jerseys. Wearing borrowed shirts, the Explorers forced 27 turnovers, outrebounded the Wildcats 55-29 and won 104-66—the widest margin ever in Philly's Big Five play, which dates back to 1897. La Salle lost to Duquesne 81-63 and beat Rutgers 82-76.
After trailing Boston College 36-30 at the half, St. John's came out shooting and was on target with 79% of its attempts, winning 80-72. Leading the resurgence was Glen Williams, a freshman from the Virgin Islands, who sank seven shots in a row. Then, with Mel Utley canning 23 points, the Redmen downed Seton Hall 68-53. Massachusetts humiliated Maine 108-38 to win the Yankee Conference title, as the Black Bears made only 19% of their shots.
"The lights are so bright here that I had trouble shooting," said Dennis DuVal of Syracuse after an 80-60 win at Niagara. "I took one shot that went over the backboard." Once accustomed to the lights, DuVal scored 22 points. The Orange also held off George Washington 80-79.
Two other hotshots were Lee Hollerbach of Bridgeport and Ernie Farange of New Hampshire. Without realizing it, Hollerbach had eclipsed the NCAA record for consecutive field goals when his 21st straight shot broke the mark held by Notre Dame's John Shumate. In a 72-69 loss to Iona, he made it 22 before finally missing. As for Farange, he hurled one of those half-court desperation shots in the last two seconds—and in it went to nip Holy Cross 68-67.
1. PITTSBURGH (22-2)
2. PROVIDENCE (23-3)