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PITTSBURGH (AP) — It’s not uncommon for Louisville’s Anas Mahmoud to physically dominant his opponent. The 7-foot center has a size advantage over most players he faces.
He dominated the game on Sunday against Pittsburgh, scoring 14 points to lead the Cardinals to a 94-60 win.
Mahmoud scored eight of his points in the first half, when he shot 4 of 6 from the floor and the Cardinals opened up a 26-point lead over the hapless Panthers, which fell to 0-13 in Atlantic Coast Conference play.
Mahmoud also had five rebounds and three blocks while holding Pitt starting center Terrell Brown to a 0 for 7 from the floor.
“Ray (Spalding) and Anas are playing with a different sense of confidence on the low block,” Louisville coach David Padgett said.
Without Louisville’s leading scorer Deng Adel in the lineup for the second straight game, there was a natural tendency for the Cardinals to want to do more than they were capable of. Mahmoud said that was at the front of their minds entering the game.
“We talked about that right after we found out he wasn’t going to be playing,” Mahmoud said. “We all talked about how we can’t be somebody we’re not. We don’t expect anybody to be DA when he’s not here. What we’ve got to do is split the roles and have everybody try to pick up what they can do.”
V.J. King and Malik Williams also had 14 points, while Jordan Nwora (13) and Quentin Snider (11) joined them in double figures. Louisville shot 63 percent from the floor and 53 percent from beyond the 3-point line. The Cardinals had 23 assists on 34 field goals, led by Darius Perry’s seven helpers.
Pitt (8-18) was led by freshman Shamiel Stevenson with 15 points. Parker Stewart added 12 and Jared Wilson-Frame 11.
The Cardinals (18-8, 8-5) have won 11 straight games in the series. They set the record for Pitt’s largest margin of defeat at home last season by winning by 55 points.
Louisville: The Cardinals jumped into a tie for fifth in the ACC. But there’s much left to be decided. There are six teams within a game and a half of the Cardinals one way or the other, and Louisville faces a tough stretch run with three ranked teams in its final five games.
Pitt: The Panthers offensive struggles continue to mount. After scoring just 48 points at Clemson on Thursday, the Panthers followed it up with 60 points on 35 percent shooting against the Cardinals. Pitt has cracked the 60-point mark just four times in conference play.
“We haven’t really had everybody on our team contribute what they can do in the same game,” said freshman Parker Stewart. “Once we figure out how to get everybody playing to their full potential on the same night, we’ll give somebody a problem.”
Louisville: Will return home to play No. 21 North Carolina on Saturday. The Cardinals are 2-0 against the Tar Heels at the KFC Yum! Center since joining the ACC in 2014.
Pitt: Hosts Boston College on Tuesday. The Panthers have won 11 straight games against the Eagles.
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