PITTSBURGH -- Pittsburgh closed its nonconference schedule, and coach Jamie Dixon earned his 250th career victory with a 59-43 win over Kennesaw State on Sunday.
Dixon is 250-77 in nine seasons as a head coach with a 119-10 record against non-conference opponents.
It was closer than the Panthers probably anticipated early in the game. The Owls made four of their first six shots from 3-point range and trailed just 16-13 with 11 minutes to go in the first half.
Pitt went on a 10-3 run for its first double-digit lead with 4 minutes remaining and led 30-16 at halftime. The 16 points tied for the ninth-fewest the Panthers have allowed in a half in school history.
Kennesaw State again turned to 3-pointers in the second half and hit three in a row before tipping in a rebound to make it 39-29 with 13:48 left to play. They again pulled within 10 points at 44-34 on yet another 3-point field goal with 10 minutes remaining.
J.J. Moore scored for Pitt on a fast-break layup, Kennesaw State turned the ball over and was hit with a pair of fouls, including a technical, on guard Myles Hamilton. Travon Woodall was 1 of 2 and Moore 2 of 2 from the line to give the Panthers a 49-34 lead.
Pitt outscored Kennesaw State only 29-27 in the second half.
Panthers senior center Dante Taylor, who missed Wednesday's game with a bruised heel and was questionable for the game, played 13 minutes and scored three points.
The Panthers begin their final season in the Big East against No. 11 Cincinnati on Dec. 31.
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