PITTSBURGH (AP) – Trey McGowens scored 18 points as Pitt held off upset-minded Northern Illinois 59-50 on Monday night.

Pitt trailed at halftime and for more than 25 minutes of the contest, but came through late when McGowens hit a 3-pointer from the Pitt logo at the center of the court to put the Panthers up by seven points with under a minute to play.

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McGowens finished 7 of 13 from the floor and 4 of 8 from 3-point range, where he was the only Panthers player to make a basket. The rest of Pitt’s players were 0 for 9.

The Huskies built a lead, thanks to the play of senior guard Eugene German, who scored 18 points on 7-of-18 shooting and was 4 of 12 from behind – and at times way behind – the 3-point arc. Northern Illinois shot 40% from 3-point range.

NIU extended its lead to seven in the second half before Pitt head coach Jeff Capel switched to a matchup zone that shut down the Huskies’ offense. Pitt (8-3) finished the game on a 15-0 run over the final 6:11 and the Huskies (6-5) missed their final 11 field goal attempts.

BIG PICTURE

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NIU: German considered leaving Northern Illinois for the NBA Draft after his junior year. When he’s been presented with top competition as a senior with the Huskies, he’s taken advantage. German scored 24 points and had six assists in a Northern Illinois loss to Iowa State earlier this season, and he came through with another strong performance against the Panthers.

Pitt: Under Capel, Pitt has had trouble at times taking care of business on their home court. In Capel’s first season, the Panthers lost to Niagara. This year, the Panthers lost to Nicholls State in their second game of the season before struggling with Northern Illinois on Monday.

UP NEXT

Northern Illinois: Finishes a season-long four-game road win with a trip to Chicago State. The Huskies are 2-4 on the road this season, compared with 4-1 at home.

Pitt: Continues its four-game homestand by hosting Binghamton on Friday. Pitt has never lost to a member of the America East Conference.

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