The 12th-ranked Miami Hurricanes just barely got out of their home gym with a 65-63 victory Tuesday night.
In the process, Pitt continues to hover just under the national consciousness. The Panthers can’t pick up a big win. This team has yet to defeat a ranked program in 2015-16.
The ending was unplanned but dramatic nonetheless. After Pitt’s James Robinson nailed a 3 with 31 seconds remaining to tie the game at 60, Miami held the ball until almost the end of the shot clock. Sheldon McClellan launched a 3 from the corner, it bounced up, allowing Miami’s Davon Reed and chance to tip it in. Reed’s effort didn’t fall true, and then, in comes 5-foot-10 Angel Rodriguez, who just gets enough on the ball to lift it through. Dramatic moment for Rodriguez.
The drama wasn’t done there. Rodriguez put himself, literally, in a tough spot on the game’s final possession. With Pitt down two, Rodriguez rushed to take a charge on Robinson. Heck, you could argue the call should have been a charge.
The no-call is mystifying. But Rodriguez almost cost him team a tough foul here; fortunately, Miami was not in the bonus. The Hurricanes finished with just 11 team fouls, in fact. Here’s the last play.
Oh man, I want the players to decide it too. But there has to be a whistle here. #Pitt #Miami @PantherLair pic.twitter.com/6aF6yrLdoA
— Kevin Connelly (@Connelly_Times) February 10, 2016
Miami is now 19-4 and 8-3 in the ACC. The Canes, who got a team-high 17 points from Rodriguez and a double-double out of Tonye Jekiri (10 and 10), continue to look the part of a No. 4 seed or better come NCAA Tournament time. The U is 12-1 at home this season.
Pittsburgh has yet to beat a ranked team this season. At 17-6, Jamie Dixon’s team hasn’t won’t two games in a row in more than a month. Two of its next three are on the road, including a near-impossible task at North Carolina on Sunday.