GAMEDAY College Football

Georgia Tech 26, Pittsburgh 21

(AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)

By WILL GRAVES
AP Sports Writer

PITTSBURGH - Jeff Sims passed for a touchdown and ran for another, Hassan Hall piled up 157 yards rushing and Georgia Tech made interim head coach Brent Key a winner in his debut, stunning No. 24 Pittsburgh 26-21.

Five days after Key was promoted to replace Geoff Collins - fired four games into his fourth season with the Yellow Jackets - Georgia Tech took advantage of some sloppy play by the defending ACC champions to beat an FBS opponent for the first time in nearly a year.

Linebacker Charlie Thomas recovered a fumble and picked off Pitt quarterback Kedon Slovis to set up two of Gavin Edwards' five field goals as the inspired Yellow Jackets (2-3, 1-1 ACC) converted three Pitt turnovers into 13 points, including a 21-yard touchdown pass from Sims to E.J. Jenkins with 10:30 to play that gave Georgia Tech a 19-7 lead.

The Panthers (3-2, 0-1) drew within five on a 26-yard touchdown pass from Slovis to Jaden Bradley with 1:57 to go but Hall raced 63 yards on the first play of Georgia Tech's ensuring possession and Sims darted in from 18 yards out with 1:25 remaining to seal it.

The victory snapped a nine-game losing streak to FBS opponents by the Yellow Jackets, the last five by a combined score of 210-20, including a 27-10 setback to UCF last weekend that ultimately cost Collins and athletic director Todd Stansbury their jobs.

Tasked with trying to make something of his alma mater's season, Key promised the Yellow Jackets would "play the best brand of football we possibly can."

At soggy and cold Acrisure Statdium, that meant relying heavily on a defense that never let Slovis or the Panthers get comfortable until they were too far behind.

The USC transfer completed a deceiving 26 of 45 passes for 305 yards with three touchdowns - two in the final 2 minutes - and an interception as Pitt's offense sputtered in the second half without junior running back Israel Abanikanda. The ACC's leading rusher exited late in the first half with an undisclosed injury and his replacement, Vincent Davis, fumbled twice in Pitt territory to set up Georgia Tech scores.

THE TAKEAWAY

Georgia Tech: Key, the first Yellow Jackets alum to lead the program since Bill Curry's tenure in the 1980s, made a pretty compelling opening statement that he should be considered for the full-time gig to replace Collins, whose rebuilding project failed to get off the ground. What Georgia Tech lacked in aesthetics it made up for in grit while largely shutting down an offense that came in averaging 36 points a game.

Pitt: The Panthers began the season talking about repeating as the ACC champs and maybe mounting an insurgent run at the CFP. An overtime loss to Tennessee last month derailed the CFP dream and now they're playing catchup in the Coastal Division just one game into conference play.


Scoring Summary
First Quarter GaTechPitt
GaTech FG 11:14 Gavin Stewart 37 yard field goal 3 0
Second Quarter GaTechPitt
GaTech FG 2:50 Gavin Stewart 33 yard field goal 6 0
Pitt TD 1:04 Gavin Bartholomew 29 yard TD pass from Kedon Slovis (Ben Sauls Extra Point) 6 7
Third Quarter GaTechPitt
GaTech FG 8:36 Gavin Stewart 40 yard field goal 9 7
Fourth Quarter GaTechPitt
GaTech FG 12:40 Gavin Stewart 30 yard field goal 12 7
GaTech TD 10:30 E.J. Jenkins 21 yard TD pass from Jeff Sims (Gavin Stewart Extra Point) 19 7
Pitt TD 1:57 Jaden Bradley 26 yard TD pass from Kedon Slovis (Ben Sauls Extra Point) 19 14
GaTech TD 1:25 Jeff Sims 18 yard TD run (Gavin Stewart Extra Point) 26 14
Pitt TD 0:14 Jaden Bradley 18 yard TD pass from Kedon Slovis (Ben Sauls Extra Point) 26 21
Team Stats
  Georgia Tech Pittsburgh
First downs 18 26
  Rushing 11 9
  Passing 4 15
  Penalty 3 2
3rd Down Efficiency 5-16, 31% 2-12, 17%
4th down efficiency 0-1, 0% 1-2, 50%
Rushes-Yards 44-236 31-106
Passing Yards 102 305
Return Yards 4 145
Completions-Attempts-Int 11-27-0 26-45-1
Sacks-Yards Lost 5-35 2-13
Punts 6 6
Fumbles Lost 1-0 2-2
Penalties - Yards 4-43 11-75
Georgia Tech Passing
Player Cmp Att Yds TDs Int
J. Sims 11 26 102 1 0
N. McCollum 0 1 0 0 0
Pittsburgh Passing
Player Cmp Att Yds TDs Int
K. Slovis 26 45 305 3 1
Georgia Tech Rushing
Player Carries Yds Avg TDs
H. Hall 20 157 7.9 0
J. Sims 19 81 4.3 1
D. McDuffie 2 4 2.0 0
D. Smith 1 0 0.0 0
N. McCollum 1 -5 -5.0 0
Pittsburgh Rushing
Player Carries Yds Avg TDs
V. Davis 15 80 5.3 0
I. Abanikanda 10 31 3.1 0
C. Flemister 2 4 2.0 0
K. Slovis 3 -8 -2.7 0
Georgia Tech Receiving
Player Rec Yds Avg TDs
E. Jenkins 2 54 27.0 1
N. McCollum 3 24 8.0 0
D. Leonard 3 15 5.0 0
M. Carter 1 5 5.0 0
H. Hall 2 4 2.0 0
Pittsburgh Receiving
Player Rec Yds Avg TDs
J. Wayne 6 89 14.8 0
K. Mumpfield 7 76 10.9 0
G. Bartholomew 3 54 18.0 1
J. Bradley 2 44 22.0 2
K. Johnson 2 20 10.0 0
B. Means 1 15 15.0 0
V. Davis 3 14 4.7 0
J. McConnachie 1 3 3.0 0
M. Minor 1 -10 -10.0 0
Georgia Tech Interceptions
Player Int Yards
C. Thomas 1 0
Pittsburgh Interceptions
Player Int Yards
Georgia Tech Punting
Player Punts Yards Avg
D. Shanahan 6 273 45.5
Pittsburgh Punting
Player Punts Yards Avg
S. Vander Haar 6 217 36.2
Georgia Tech Punt Returns
Player Ret Yards Average
Pittsburgh Punt Returns
Player Ret Yards Average
M. Devonshire 5 73 14.6
Georgia Tech Kick Returns
Player Ret Yards Average
A. Eley 1 0 0
N. McCollum 1 4 4.0
Pittsburgh Kick Returns
Player Ret Yards Average
C. Flemister 2 51 25.5
I. Abanikanda 1 21 21.0
Georgia Tech Missed FG
Player Length
Pittsburgh Missed FG
Player Length




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