Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Pitt 67, Duquesne 57 Panthers Halt Skid vs. Dukes Kiesel Helps Mcconnell-Serio Top Former Team, Continue Mastery of City Game

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Pitt 67, Duquesne 57 Panthers Halt Skid vs. Dukes Kiesel Helps Mcconnell-Serio Top Former Team, Continue Mastery of City Game

Article excerpt

A Duquesne loss in the women's edition of the City Game usually would leave Suzie McConnell-Serio very upset with the outcome. This time, she was just fine with a Pitt victory.

In the first game against her former team, McConnell-Serio's Panthers (8-6) took down the Dukes (8-5), 67-57, Sunday at Petersen Events Center, ending Duquesne's four-game winning streak in the series.

"Our players kept their composure and stayed together," McConnell- Serio said. "I'm very proud of our team and the effort we showed today and the poise that we finished the game with."

Pitt junior guard Brianna Kiesel was honored before the game for becoming the 18th player in program history to score more than 1,000 points in her career. In a game that saw both teams struggle to score, it was Pitt's star who kept the Panthers in it.

Kiesel scored 16 of her team's 26 first-half points. She finished with 27 points, 10 rebounds and 5 assists. Her penetration in the halfcourt and ability to get easy baskets in transition put constant pressure on the Dukes defensively.

"Kiesel is a kid who has next-level quickness and explosiveness," Duquesne coach Dan Burt said. "We tried to defend her several different ways. ... She caused us a lot of problems."

"She is unbelievable. She managed the game so well," McConnell- Serio said. "Once she started hitting shots, I think everybody's shoulders were able to relax a little bit."

A Kiesel layup as time expired in the first half gave Pitt a 26- 20 lead heading into the locker room. It also gave the Panthers a boost in momentum that would extend into the second half. She felt this game meant even more with McConnell-Serio on the Pitt sideline.

"Coach beat us twice when she was at Duquesne and now she came to us and we beat them," Kiesel said. "It shows that [winning] factor was Coach McConnell. It was definitely a big win for us. …

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