Georgia Tech “Blewitt” Against Pitt 31-28

Photo By Jon Barash

ATLANTA — The Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets were looking to pick up their first ACC win of the year against the Pittsburgh Panthers at historic Grant Field and put an end to their historic 4-game losing streak but were unable to do so.

Tied at 28-28 with under a minute remaining in regulation, Panthers’ kicker Cody Blewitt nailed a 56-yard field goal to go ahead 31-28. The Yellow Jackets had one last-ditch effort to tie up the game with seconds remaining but failed to have their prayers answered.

The loss runs the Yellow Jackets’ losing streak to five and seemingly extinguishes any chance to win the Atlantic Coastal Division while the Panthers (5-1, 3-0 ACC) keep their perfect ACC record intact.

Georgia Tech (2-5, 0-4 ACC) rushed for 376 yards as a team and were led by true freshman Marcus Marshall who carried the ball 10 times for 159 yards and scored two touchdowns.

Quarterback Justin Thomas completed 6-of-15 for 106 yards and threw for a touchdown. Thomas carried the ball 14 times for 95 yards as well.

“Well, right now, we are not very good on defense,” Georgia Tech head coach Paul Johnson said. “Face it. Facts are facts. We are probably from 10th to 14th in every category in the league. So we’ve got to find a way to get better. And having said that, we had our chances.”

The Panthers got on the board first after a 13-play, 75-yard drive capped off by a 6-yard touchdown pass from Nathan Peterman to Tyler Boyd gave them a 7-0 lead with 7:50 remaining in the first quarter.

On Georgia Tech’s ensuing possession, just three plays into the drive Marshall took a handoff from Thomas 58 yards for the score to knot the game at 7-7 with 6:29 remaining in the first quarter.

Both teams scored two touchdowns apiece in the second quarter to deadlock the score at 21-21 at halftime.

Both teams struggle to move the ball in the third quarter, but the Panthers managed to find the end zone on a 6-yard pass from Peterman to J.P. Holtz to give Pittsburgh a 28-21 lead going into the fourth quarter.

The Yellow Jackets didn’t waste much time in the fourth quarter and knotted the game at 28-28 after a 7-yard run from Marshall with 13:35 to play.

The Georgia Tech defense forced a quick punt on the Panthers’ ensuing possession, but the Jackets punted the ball right back to Pittsburgh after just four plays.

The Panthers held onto the ball for 7:02 on a 14-play, 31-yard drive that set up Blewitt’s game-winning 56-yard field goal.

Pittsburgh totaled nearly 10 minutes of possesion longer than the Yellow Jackets, but managed just under 100 fewer yards of total offense.

“We had some real screw-ups on offense, basically when the game got tight,” Johnson said. “All freshmen. So it’s tough, and the way the game was going, you didn’t want to miss your turn.”

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