If we said all of the action happened in the 1st half, and then the world went into slow motion we wouldn’t be wrong. The Pittsburgh Panther offense managed a couple of interesting and possibly score cutting drives, and then Oscar Bradburn pinned them on their five... late in the 3rd quarter of back and forth smashmouth football... and field position was critical.
Things really started to come apart for the Panthers early in the 4th quarter when on 4th and 1, Rayshard Ashby stopped the running play on 3rd down, and then Kenny Pickett’s pass was knocked down by Jarrod Hewitt. A tactic that completely confused Pitt all day. The zone blitz with 4 down lineman and the Tackles actually dropping into coverage.
The short field left to the Hokies was eaten up by a really bad facemask penalty that nearly yanked Deshawn McClease’s helmet off, and then a nasty targeting penalty that resulted in an ejection against Pitt’s starting Safety.
There was still some life in Pitt after the 3rd Offensive Tech Touchdown though. So the Panther O started to try to do almost anything to get something on the board. A long run on a weird wildcat got Pitt into Tech territory. But bad footing and a steady hard rain just hurt Pitt’s play making ability. Nardo went for it on 4th down again, and passed again... the ball ended up in the dirt again... the Hokies took over on downs at their own 45 yard line with 8:04 left in the game and Pitt having exactly Zero answers and 0 points, too.
I am shuffling through the stats and noticed that Pitt is 0 for 3 on 4th down conversion attempts. Tech didn’t do much with the next series...There were a couple of good plays and no real effort to drive the ball. It was just a clock burning exercise.
Pitt put in Nick Patti at QB to try and do something different. Kenny Pickett was just tired and stopped. Pittsburgh put in the garbage time offense for it’s final drive, and moved the ball a bit, but Tech’s defense was smelling something special for Bud on his last home game. The drive stalled with 3:20 on the clock, and Pitt actually just punted the ball.
With 2:56 left on the clock the Hokies were running the #2’s on offense. Quincy Patterson in at QB, Caleb Steward churning and burning at RB. The final drive was more for keeping the ball away from Pitt.
The final first down by Caleb Steward sealed the deal and Bud Foster’s #LPD pitched its second shutout in a row.