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Notre Dame stuns second-ranked Pittsburgh

PITTSBURGH -- Ben Hansbrough and Notre Dame made Pittsburgh feel the burn Monday night.

Hansbrough scored 19 points, Carleton Scott had 16 and the 15th-ranked Fighting Irish beat No. 2 Pittsburgh, 56-51, snapping the Panthers' 20-game home winning streak.

Employing a methodical, plodding game plan they call "burn," the Irish won its third consecutive game in the series against Pittsburgh and picked up its first victory at the Petersen Events Center. The Panthers won 51 of their previous 52 home games.

"This was the first time we committed to an all-out 'burn,' and we beat Pitt doing it two times last year," said Hansbrough, who went 8 for 14 from the field. "This is probably the best win I've had maybe ever."

Scott went 5 for 6 from three-point range as Notre Dame (17-4, 6-3 Big East) earned its first road win of the season. Reserve Scott Martin made three threes and finished with 10 points.

"We knew if we didn't concentrate at the end of the clock, we would lose here by 15 like everybody else does," Irish coach Mike Brey said. "They're really good. They're hard to guard. They're really hard to keep off the boards. This was the absolute road challenge for us."

Gilbert Brown had 13 points for the Panthers (19-2, 7-1), who shot 40 percent (18 of 45) from the field in their first conference loss of the season.

Pitt missed four of its final five field-goal tries, including three three-point attempts and a layup.

"We didn't make the plays down at the end that we needed to make in a game like this," Pitt coach Jamie Dixon said.

Hansbrough also had seven assists and Scott added nine rebounds for Notre Dame, which shot 49 percent (19 for 39).


Orange a little down

SYRACUSE -- Jim Boeheim said early this season that Brandon Triche, Kris Joseph, Rick Jackson and Scoop Jardine would be key to Syracuse's success.

The Orange coach needs them to step up right now.

Syracuse hosts Seton Hall today after consecutive losses dropped the Orange from third to a tie for ninth with BYU in this week's The AP's Top 25.

"We probably are not as good as we think we are," said Triche, a sophomore guard. "Going into the game against anyone, we expect to win. But losing two Big East games in a row, that's really tough."

Syracuse (18-2, 5-2) was undefeated before its 74-66 loss at Pittsburgh last Monday. A road setback against the talented Panthers is no cause for alarm, but the Orange fell 83-72 to Villanova on Saturday in front of 33,736 in the Carrier Dome, the second-largest on-campus crowd in NCAA history.

"Early in the year, I had an opinion we weren't good enough. Now, it's a fact," Boeheim said. "I told the players we're not good enough to beat a top-five team. We can get there, but right now we're not good enough."

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