Pittsburgh Vs Eastern Kentucky

Daniel KablackCorrespondent IIINovember 20, 2009

Tonight's matchup will be hosted at the Petersen Events Center with Eastern Kentucky looking to snap Big East challenger Pittsburgh's 23 Home game winning streak tonight at 7:00 PM.

Last year, the Eastern Kentucky Colonels dropped one to Big East foe Cincinnati 85-77 in overtime.

Eastern Kentucky has played one game this season so far, which resulted in a 102-71 triumph over West Virginia Wesleyan. EKU returns four starters from last year's 18-win squad, so they're likely to be competitive. They lost their top scorer from last season, during the offseason.

Bringing into the game tonight long range accuracy, the Colonels come off a win over West Virginia Weslyan, a Div II school, shooting an impressive 63.3% from the floor. Colonels Guard, Justin Stommes went 10-14 from the floor and 4-of-7 from beyond the arc to a new career-high 28 points in a win over WVW, a great start for J. Stommes, who averaged 10.1 ppg as a starter last year. Josh Taylor also averaged just over 10 ppg a year ago and he added 19 points and six boards to the season-opening win.

The last time Eastern Kentucky and Pittsburgh have met, was in 1980 and 1981, both games which the Panthers were victorious, most recently (1981) 80-56.

Pitt comes into this season without DeJuan Blair, a huge part of the Panthers offense last year, who is now playing in the NBA. Much of the talent remains at Pitt, along with the addition of many new players, poised to be stars one day.

Pitt (2-0) won it's latest outing vs Binghamton, 71-46 during ESPNs 24 hour College Basketball marathon Tuesday. Pitt's Ashton Gibbs finished with a new single game career mark 22 points, going 6-10 on shots beyond the arc. The Panthers have lost four of their five starters from last year’s squad that advanced to the Elite Eight.

The Colonels return home to play Fairleigh Dickinson, UC Irvine and UTSA on Nov. 23-25 as part of the 2009 O’Reilly Auto Parts CBE Classic.

Prediction: Pitt 72 Eastern Kentucky 61