Tonight, Pittsburgh takes its home floor in a game against Washington State in the CBI Championship. Interestingly, this tournament has a best of three final format. Because Washington State defeated Pitt 67-66 in game 1, Pittsburgh faces elimination. If Pitt wins, they host Washington State again on Friday.
Amusingly, the two teams shared a plane from Pullman, Washington, to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Again, this is part of the uniqueness of the CBI.
In Monday’s game, the Cougars were able to win, even though they played without leading scorer Brock Motum, who averages 18 points a game. In his absence, Washington State (19-16) was led by Abe Lodwick (16 points), Reggie Moore (14 points) and DaVonte Lacy (10 points). Washington State converted 51% of their field goals en route to the victory.
Tray Woodall and J.J. Moore led Pitt with 16 points each. Pitt (20-17) had a multiple chances to win the game in the final seconds. Woodall’s layup attempt was rejected by Washington State’s D.J. Shelton. The Panthers’ Lamar Patterson missed a long jumper as time expired.
Returning home should help the Panthers. Although this year was a tough one for Pitt, they are notorious for being a very tough team to beat at home. It will be interesting, however, to see how active the fan base is. The Oakland Zoo might not be as intimidating.