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GAMEDAY College Football

Pittsburgh 37, Virginia 7

By HANK KURZ Jr.
AP Sports Writer

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. - M.J. Devonshire and Marquis Williams returned interceptions for touchdowns on the first two plays from scrimmage and Pittsburgh reached bowl eligibility with a 37-7 victory at Virginia.

Devonshire's interception of Brennan Armstrong and 29-yard return gave the Panthers (6-4, 3-3 Atlantic Coast Conference) a 7-0 lead after just 5 seconds. After a touchback, Armstrong tried to throw deeper, but Williams intercepted and went 39 yard for the TD.

"We thought they'd possibly come out and do what they did on that first play and we had a great defense called for it," Panthers coach Pat Narduzzi said of Devonshire's interception. "And, you know, I think it made Armstrong think a little bit, at least for the first half and maybe even the third quarter."

The Cavaliers (3-6, 1-6), who needed a victory to remain in contention for a bowl berth, trailed 28-0 by the end of the first quarter. Many in the sparse crowd that booed them as they left the field at halftime then seemingly also left on a sunny, warm fall afternoon.

"Obviously, not results any of us want, not the start any of us wanted," offensive coordinator Des Kitchings said. "We got a group of kids in there hurting, coaches are hurting because we've been making progress and today just took a step back with the start of that game."

Israel Abanikanda added to his nation-leading touchdown total with a 1-yard run on Pitts' first offensive possession, and Kedon Slovis hit Jared Wayne with a 31-yard scoring pass on the next, putting the Panthers ahead 28-0 with 2:33 left in the opening quarter.

Ben Sauls kicked three second-half field goals and the outcome was never in doubt as Pitt won for the sixth time in the last seven meetings with the Cavaliers. The Panthers outgained Virginia 397-144 and held the home team to minus 8 rushing yards.

Armstrong, playing without his top three receivers for the second week in a row, hit Malachi Fields from nine yards for the Cavaliers' lone score late in the third quarter.

THE TAKEAWAY

Pitt: The Panthers not only hurt Armstrong with the interceptions, but also kept Virginia's leading rusher bottled up in the backfield. He was sacked eight times for minus 69 yards and had just a pair of positive runs totaling 23 yards.

"I think the first two plays bothered him a lot. But, you know, our guys did a good job. We got a pretty good D-line and the linebackers are doing their job," Narduzzi said.

Virginia: Armstrong's decision to return after a huge junior season was cause for celebration at Virginia. He threw for 4,449 yards last season with 31 touchdowns and 10 interceptions. This season, a more balanced offense with less opportunity for freelancing hasn't gone as well. His TD pass was his seventh against 12 interceptions this season.

November 12, 2022


Scoring Summary
First Quarter PittUVa
Pitt TD 14:55 M.J. Devonshire 29 yd interception return (Ben Sauls kick) 7 0
Pitt TD 14:44 Marquis Williams 39 yd interception return (Ben Sauls kick) 14 0
Pitt TD 8:04 Israel Abanikanda 1 yd run (Ben Sauls kick) 21 0
Pitt TD 2:33 Bub Means 31 yd pass from Kedon Slovis (Ben Sauls kick) 28 0
Third Quarter PittUVa
Pitt FG 7:21 Ben Sauls 25 yd FG 31 0
UVa TD 3:48 Malachi Fields 9 yd pass from Brennan Armstrong (Will Bettridge kick) 31 7
Fourth Quarter PittUVa
Pitt FG 8:21 Ben Sauls 27 yd FG 34 7
Pitt FG 2:23 Ben Sauls 39 yd FG 37 7
Team Stats
  Pittsburgh Virginia
First downs 21 15
  Rushing 13 5
  Passing 8 8
  Penalty 0 2
3rd Down Efficiency 6-15, 40% 2-13, 15%
4th down efficiency 1-1, 100% 1-2, 50%
Rushes-Yards 48-189 24--8
Passing Yards 208 152
Return Yards 153 0
Completions-Attempts-Int 14-24-0 17-33-2
Sacks-Yards Lost 0-0 8--69
Punts 4 8
Punts-Average 37.8 51.1
Fumbles Lost 2-0 0-0
Penalties - Yards 9-82 1-5
Time of Possession 36:02 23:58
Pittsburgh Passing
Player Cmp Att Yds TDs Int
K. Slovis 14 24 208 1 0
Virginia Passing
Player Cmp Att Yds TDs Int
B. Armstrong 17 33 152 1 2
Pittsburgh Rushing
Player Carries Yds Avg TDs
I. Abanikanda 24 121 5.0 1
R. Hammond Jr. 13 39 3.0 0
C. Flemister 8 38 4.8 0
Virginia Rushing
Player Carries Yds Avg TDs
M. Hollins 8 23 2.9 0
R. Walker Jr. 4 10 2.5 0
X. Brown 2 5 2.5 0
B. Armstrong 10 -46 -4.6 0
Pittsburgh Receiving
Player Rec Yds Avg TDs
B. Means 3 90 30.0 1
K. Mumpfield 7 60 8.6 0
J. Wayne 2 40 20.0 0
V. Davis 1 10 10.0 0
I. Abanikanda 1 8 8.0 0
Virginia Receiving
Player Rec Yds Avg TDs
M. Fields 5 58 11.6 1
B. Kemp IV 4 38 9.5 0
S. Wilson 3 25 8.3 0
M. Hollins 3 22 7.3 0
S. Wood Jr. 1 5 5.0 0
X. Brown 1 4 4.0 0
Pittsburgh Interceptions
Player Int Yards
M. Williams 1 39
M. Devonshire 1 29
Virginia Interceptions
Player Int Yards
Pittsburgh Punting
Player Punts Yards Avg
C. Junko 3 114 38.0
S. Vander Haar 1 37 37.0
Virginia Punting
Player Punts Yards Avg
D. Sparks 8 409 51.1
Pittsburgh Punt Returns
Player Ret Yards Average
M. Devonshire 5 72 14.4
V. Davis 1 13 13.0
Virginia Punt Returns
Player Ret Yards Average
B. Kemp IV 1 0 0
Pittsburgh Kick Returns
Player Ret Yards Average
Virginia Kick Returns
Player Ret Yards Average
Pittsburgh Missed FG
Player Length
B. Sauls 54
Virginia Missed FG
Player Length
W. Bettridge 43




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