BOSTON – Levance Fields pointed Pittsburgh in the right direction just in time – as usual.
For the second straight game, the orchestrator of the offense took the big shots himself, hitting a 3-pointer with 50.9 seconds left, then scoring off his steal as the top-seeded Panthers reached the regional finals for the first time in 35 years with a 60-55 win over Xavier on Thursday night.
One more win and they’ll be headed to Detroit for the Final Four.
“We came in expecting to win two games,” Fields said before acknowledging the obvious: “It was dramatic.”
The star point guard provided the drama in Pitt’s previous win, 84-76 over Oklahoma State. That game was tied at 74 with 2:42 left. Then Fields made a layup and a 3-pointer and the Panthers never trailed after that.
Pitt (31-4) trailed 54-52 before Fields connected. He then poked the ball away from B.J. Raymond and went in for a layup with 23.9 seconds to go.
The Panthers overcame an eight-point halftime deficit.