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Louisville coach Pitino supports gun control

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Louisville coach Pitino supports gun control

Count Rick Pitino among basketball coaches supporting gun control.

The Louisville coach was asked Friday during a news conference at the team's practice facility about his reaction to Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim's comments Monday assailing the nation's gun culture following the school shooting in Newtown, Conn. Pitino agreed with Boeheim, and said he couldn't understand why people wouldn't support gun control.

On consecutive days, Boeheim and Winthrop coach Pat Kelsey used postgame news conferences to express sympathy for victims' families and stress the need for reforms to avoid another tragedy.

Pitino followed by adding that society doesn't need guns.

He says, ``The fact that every single person does not want it would be a mystery. This is not the beginning of American civilization where we need guns like it's the wild, wild West.''

Pitino said he was unaware of Boeheim's comments following the Syracuse coach's milestone 900th career victory Monday night. Told what his colleague said, Pitino said Boeheim was right and similarly expressed empathy for victims' families.

The Louisville coach seemed saddened over the grieving process the town is going through, believing it might never end. He said he still grieves for brother-in-law Billy Minardi, who died in the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on the World Trade Center in New York.

Pitino created an annual game in Minardi's honor - beating his son, Richard, and Florida International on Wednesday night - but said he thinks about his good friend every day. And he figures the families, friends and neighbors in Newtown will be hurting for a long time as well.

``I don't know how anybody can ever close their eyes in those families,'' Pitino said. ``There can be no good that comes out of that except immediate gun control.''

Pitino went more political, believing that members of Congress on both sides have been around too long to effect change. If they were doing what's right for the country, he said, the nation ``would demand'' gun control.

He had little to say about the National Rifle Association, which held a news conference Friday in Washington saying that schools should have armed officers for protection.

``I don't care about those people. They have their own agenda,'' he said. ``I don't respect people who have their own agendas.''

Cavaliers clamp down on Pitt

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Cavaliers clamp down on Pitt

PITTSBURGH -- No. 1 Virginia allowed just seven points in the first half and secured the regular-season Atlantic Coast Conference title outright with a 66-37 win over Pittsburgh on Saturday.

Freshman guard De'Andre Hunter came off the bench to lead the Cavaliers (26-2, 14-1 ACC) with 14 points in a game that didn't take big offensive efforts from Virginia's regulars. Of the five starters, only guard Ty Jerome exceeded his season average with 13 points.

The game was never competitive, as Virginia started on an 8-0 run and Pitt didn't make a field goal until Jared Wilson-Frame hit a 3-pointer at the midway point of the first half.

Virginia coach Tony Bennett rested most of his regulars in the second half. Reserve Nigel Johnson added 12 points on 4-of-6 shooting.

Parker Stewart led Pitt (8-22, 0-17) with 12 points, all on 3-pointers. Pitt had next to no presence inside. The Panthers were outscored 28-8 in the paint and out-rebounded 36-24. Seven of Pitt's 11 made field goals were from beyond the arc.

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3 reasons the Caps beat the Sabres

3 reasons the Caps beat the Sabres

The Caps could not shake Buffalo for two periods, but a dominant finish on Saturday helped them pull away for a 5-1 win. Here's how they finally put away the Sabres.

A quick start

Strong starts go a long way towards helping a team in the middle of a slump. It's a confidence boost for a group in desperate need of one and the Caps got that boost on Saturday from Evgeny Kuznetsov. Kuznetsov used his wheels to zip in behind the defense and score just 50 seconds into the game. Washington led 1-0 at the end of the first, just the second time in 19 games they have held a lead after the opening 20 minutes.

RELATED: SEE THE 3 STARS FROM CAPS-SABRES HERE

Andre Burakovsky snapping a second period slump

It looked in the second period like the Caps were caught trying to protect the lead again, but Andre Burakovsky woke the team back up with his incredible highlight end-to-end goal. It really looked like Buffalo was going to tie the game at one, but instead, Burakovsky extended the lead to two. Going end to end the way he did shows a player who is starting to play with some confidence, something Burakovsky has lacked for much of the season.

Ovechkin's two-goal third period

Buffalo would not go away. Sam Reinhart got the Sabres on the board just 14 seconds into the third period and suddenly the Caps found themselves in a one-goal game again. But Ovechkin ended any hopes for the comeback as he struck in the top corner of the net on the power play from the office. He would later add a deflection goal to extend the lead to 5-1, giving a scuffling Washington team the dominant win they so sorely needed.