Pittsburgh 89, Bethune-Cookman 40: J.J. Moore came off the bench to score 14 of his game-high 18 points in the first half as the host Panthers crushed the Wildcats.
Freshman center Steven Adams logged his first career double-double with 16 points and 10 rebounds while Tray Woodall dished out a season-high 10 assists for Pitt (10-1), which improved to 99-3 against non-conference opponents in the Petersen Events Center.
The Panthers trailed just once in the opening minutes, but could not shake Bethune-Cookman (4-8) until they held the Wildcats to a free throw over the final 5:21 of the first half, allowing them to turn a five-point margin into a 44-24 advantage at the break.
Pittsburgh’s swarming defense continued applying the pressure as Bethune-Cookman could not make another field goal until 4:33 had passed in the second half. By that time, the Panthers had extended the lead to 26 and they kept increasing the bulge throughout the rest of the game.
Paul Scotland led the Wildcats with seven points.
GAME NOTEBOOK: Pittsburgh improved to 23-0 all-time against Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference opponents. … Bethune-Cookman’s offensive output was its worst since suffering an 83-39 loss to Baylor on Dec. 15, 2010. … The Panthers, who outrebounded Bethune-Cookman 40-11, recorded a season-high 28 assists and shot 67.3 percent from the field, falling just short of another season-best mark (70.8 percent in a season-opening win over Mount St. Mary’s).