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9-year-old boy who caught McCutchen’s 300th HR reveals significant milestones of his own
9-year-old boy who caught McCutchen’s 300th HR reveals significant milestones of his own
By Aidan Kasner, Senior Staff Writer • 7:31 pm

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9-year-old boy who caught McCutchen’s 300th HR reveals significant milestones of his own
9-year-old boy who caught McCutchen’s 300th HR reveals significant milestones of his own
By Aidan Kasner, Senior Staff Writer • 7:31 pm

Hinson scores 41 points, leads Pitt men’s basketball over Louisville

Senior+forward+Blake+Hinson+%282%29+dribbles+towards+the+basket+during+Saturday+nights+game+against+Louisville+in+the+Petersen+Events+Center.+
Kaylee Uribe | Senior Staff Photographer
Senior forward Blake Hinson (2) dribbles towards the basket during Saturday night’s game against Louisville in the Petersen Events Center.

If there was any game that Pitt men’s basketball (17-8, ACC 8-6) could not lose in order to stay in contention of earning an at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament, it was Saturday Night’s game against Louisville (8-18, ACC 3-12). 

But senior forward Blake Hinson made sure the Panthers would not falter, as he led the Panthers in an 86-59 victory. 

Hinson scored 41 points on Saturday night, shooting 14-24 from the field and 9-13 from three-point range. The Pitt forward’s 41 points earned him a Petersen Events Center record, a career-high for himself, his 1000th point as a Panther, tied for the third most points in program history and the most points a Pitt player has scored since Jamel Artis scored 43 in 2017 against Louisville. 

Louisville head coach Kenny Payne hasn’t seen someone have a performance like Hinson did since he was coaching in the NBA.

“It’s been a while,” Payne said. “When I was in the NBA, I saw guys run off baskets like that. Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving, Devin Booker.”

Hinson was honored by Payne’s remarks, as he said that’s what he strives for every time he steps on the court.

“I mean good, that’s what I work for,” Hinson said of Payne’s comparing him to NBA players.

In the first half, Hinson handled the majority of the scoring for the Panthers. The senior forward finished the first half two points shy of his career high, tallying 27 points. He shot 9-14 from the field, 5-8 beyond the arc and 4-5 from the free throw line. 

“Obviously [Hinson] was unbelievable,” Pitt head coach Jeff Capel said. “The shot-making, I thought he was incredibly efficient and the manner in which he did it, and we needed all of him, especially in the first half.”

Hinson wasn’t the only Panther to put up points to start the game, as junior center Federiko Federiko made two free throws, first-year guard Jaland Lowe made a mid-range field goal and junior forward Zach Austin converted a fast-break layup. 

After Austin’s fast-break layup, Hinson decided to take over the scoring for the Panthers for the next 11:14. Although Hinson was the only Panther scoring, it didn’t matter because he helped Pitt increase its lead by four points. 

“We love it,” Austin said about Hinson’s individual performance. “We [are] a family here. So seeing somebody go off like that, shoot, it just gets us going.”

By the time Hinson’s scoring run was over, the Panthers led the Cardinals 26-18. The Deltona, Florida native scored 18 straight points for the Panthers, including his 1000th career point for the program. 

With Hinson’s teammates starting to join him on the scoring run, the Panthers earned their first double-digit lead of the game. Hinson still added nine of the next 13 points for the Panthers.

At the end of the first half, Hinson was tied with the Cardinals in points and the Panthers led the Cardinals by a score of 37-27. 

In the first half, Hinson was the only Panthers to make a three-pointer. But 25 seconds into the second half, Lowe ended this streak and hit a three-point field goal. 

Hinson then resumed his scoring ways as he beat his career-high of 29 with yet another three-point field goal, bringing his scoring total to 30. 

Hinson wouldn’t stop his record-breaking night as he added another triple that tied the Pitt record for most points scored in a single game at the Petersen Events Center. 

With Pitt building on its lead, Hinson added another three-point field goal as he hit his eighth three-pointer of the night. Hinson’s 36th point of the night helped Pitt get out to a 52-35 lead with 13:55 remaining.

The Panthers maintained their dominant lead for the rest of the game as, Lowe, Austin, junior guard Ishmael Leggett and sophomore center Guillermo Diaz Graham each added a three-point field goal.

With 2:16 remaining and the Panthers leading 76-56, Hinson scored the last of his 41 points with his ninth three-point field goal of the night, causing the Oakland Zoo to erupt for the senior forward one final time.

Hinson, with his incredible night, still didn’t care about how great he was. The most important thing to him is that Pitt won today.

“At the end of the day, the most special thing that happened today is that we won,” Hinson said. “That’s the most special thing and that is what is most important for this team.”

Next up, the Panthers have a huge quad one opportunity, as Pitt travels to Winston Salem, North Carolina, for a bout against Wake Forest on Tuesday night. Tip-off is set for 9 p.m. and coverage will air on ACCN.

About the Contributor
Matthew Scabilloni, Senior Staff Writer