Pitt fools Virginia Tech with reverse touchdown by 300-pound lineman
- Author: Lawrence Cooper Oct 29, 2016,
Oct 29, 2016, 2:00
Virginia Tech got off to a good start, but couldn't finish in a big way.
James Conner rushed for 141 yards and three touchdowns for Pitt (5-3, 2-2).
Tech's red zone woes meant a record-setting day for Slye, who made six field goals to tie the school and ACC record for most field goals in a game.
Pitt returned the favor to Carolina. Ugh.
APPALACHIAN STATE 34, GEORGIA SOUTHERN 10 (at Statesboro, Ga.) - Taylor Lamb passed for 199 yards and ran for 94 yards and two touchdowns to help the Mountaineers (6-2, 4-0 Sun Belt) beat the Eagles (4-4, 3-2).
It's not as if Panthers typically enjoy some massive home-field advantage - at least against teams not named Tech. And, it could take another dominating ground performance to remain unbeaten in conference play.
Evans opened the second quarter with a lob down the right sideline for Ford.
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Virginia Tech responded with a seven-play drive that only took a shade over two minutes.
"No doubt about it, with extra practices - usually on Thursday we work on every special team, and then on a normal Tuesday, we work two phases and field goal, and then on Wednesday we work two phases, as well, with no field goal", he said.
After the teams traded punts, Pitt moved the ball 90 yards in 91 seconds to pull within 39-36 with just 2:31 left in the game.
On the Panthers' next possession, quarterback Nathan Peterman was intercepted on an errant throw at the Pitt 30 yard line. They went backward 3 yards on the ensuing possession and had to punt after Jerod Evans was sacked on third down. Virginia Tech made nine trips to the end zone. But it was again Pitt's secondary that helped make the scoring all too easy. Still, Virginia Tech limited Miami's talented running back duo of Joe Yearby and Mark Walton to 97 combined rushing yards, well below their season average. So to be up 16-14 was a reason for the Hokies to celebrate. The Panthers share the sack lead in the conference with 25 and could cause Evans to make a mistake if they can get enough pressure in the backfield. This one came on a 5-yard run with 13:25 left in the fourth quarter. Those figures rank 11th and 16th in the FBS, respectively. You've got some competition for the Heisman, and he's an offensive lineman. Dane Jackson deflected a pass but was called for pass interference, extending a drive that, under the direction of Evans' replacement Brenden Motley, would result in Slye's fifth field goal of the game. Yet again, though, the drive ended in a field goal, from 37 yards by Slye. Tech was back in front, 22-21. On the first play, he hit Hodges on his back shoulder for a 20-yard pass. Tailback Marshawn Williams, a Phoebus High alumnus, scored from two yards out late in the third quarter to give the Hokies a 29-22 lead. The Panthers will no doubt hand the football off to James Conner here.
Pitt right tackle Brian O'Neill scored his second touchdown of the season on Thursday.
Pittsburgh defensive back Dane Jackson, left, can not stop a completed pass to Isiah Ford, right, in the second half of an NCAA college football game, Thursday, Oct. 27, 2016, in Pittsburgh. Slye drove home his third field goal of the game and Tech led 9-0.
The Tech defense was just as impressive. The Hokies installed some new plays on offense, and it's important to note that Evans is producing each week in an offense that is not even fully installed yet.