Pittsburgh — Pittsburgh turned a pair of early Virginia turnovers into touchdowns and the Panther defense did the rest in a 14-3 victory on Saturday.
Tom Savage completed 13 of 30 passes for 190 yards and a touchdown with two interceptions before leaving late in the fourth quarter. Tyler Boyd caught seven passes for 111 yards for Pitt. The Panthers (3-1, 2-1 ACC) have won three straight for the first time since 2010.
A week after giving up 55 points to Duke, Pitt's defense shut down the Cavaliers (2-2, 0-1). Virginia managed just 188 total yards. Quarterback David Watford completed 15 of 36 passes for 122 yards and Virginia never threatened to make it interesting after spotting the Panthers two first-quarter scores.
Both teams came in riding high. Pitt piled up 589 total yards in a shootout win over the Blue Devils while Virginia pounded VMI 49-0.
The going was considerably tougher for both sides in a game to make some sense of the jumble behind Virginia Tech in the ACC's Coastal Division. Instead, it proved to be a jumbled mess.
The teams combined for 17 punts, five turnovers and zero momentum.
Virginia pounded away at Savage, preventing Pitt's high-power passing attack from getting going. Savage was sacked nine times and didn't come out for Pitt's final series after taking a series of shots.
The Cavaliers were no better. Virginia botched a pair of fourth downs in Pittsburgh territory in the first half — eschewing makeable field goals in the process. They were points Virginia could have used late.
Virginia's best chance came late in the fourth quarter when Watford led a drive inside the Pittsburgh 5. His fourth-down pass to tight end Jake McGee sailed high and Pitt was able to run off most of the 3:24 remaining.
What the victory lacked in aesthetics, it made up for in meaning for the Panthers. Pitt plays at Virginia Tech next week with a chance to move into a tie for the top spot in the Coastal Division and a string of winnable games to follow.
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