Game Recap (Football): Pitt vs VT
By: Brenden Peifer
The Panthers lost to the Virginia Tech Hokies with a final score of 20-14. The Hokies scored on their first drive of the game and it looked like the Panthers were going to have a long day on defense. But the defense made adjustments, and came out to hold them to only three points to close the half. Pitt’s bend don’t break mentality on defense was saving the offense time and time again. Avonte Maddox, the senior captian, had one of the best games of his career with one interception with several pass deflections. However, the defense eventually broke on the only miscue by Maddox. A slip on the field, allowed Cam Phillips to not only break the Virginia Tech receiving record, but also give Tech the go ahead TD.
The offense looked as stale as we’ve come to expect by the 2017 Panthers. Ben Dinnuci did lead the Panthers to a touchdown, scored by Rafael Araujo-Lopes in the first quarter. But after one interception, Dinucci was replaced by freshman QB Kenny Pickett. Pickett would play for the rest of the game and went 15-23 for 253 yards, and one interception. The freshman was unable to lead the offense on a scoring drive, but that was no fault of his own, as Pitt was plagued by drops and penalties. Pitt was down 20-14, with one minute to go, and after two drops by Weah, Pickett hit the senior receiver over the middle, and he took the ball down to the 1 yard line. It was ruled a touchdown on the field, but was overturned. Pitt then had the chance to win the game with seconds left on the clock. Darrin Hall was ineffective all game with 15 carries for 4 yards, and he was stopped short during each carry. On 4th and goal, for some odd reason, the offense went into a shotgun formation and were stopped for a final time to end the game. Play calling, execution, or game management? What has been the biggest problem for Pitt’s offense this year? We here at WPTS are certainly still looking for the answer. Pitt falls to 4-7 on the season, and is officially out of bowl game contention. The #3 ranked Miami Hurricanes will travel to Heinz Field to take on the Panthers in their final game of the season.