Published January 13, 2015
Blacksburg, VA (SportsNetwork.com) - Logan Thomas threw a touchdown pass, Cody Journell kicked four field goals and the 24th-ranked Virginia Tech Hokies posted a 19-9 victory over the Pittsburgh Panthers.
Thomas had 239 yards on 19-of-34 passing for the Hokies (6-1, 3-0 ACC), who have won six straight since opening the season with a loss to No. 1 Alabama.
Virginia Tech snapped a four-game losing streak in this series between former Big East-now-turned-ACC foes.
"I really like this football team," Virginia Tech head coach Frank Beamer said. "We don't always play great, but we play hard. That's all you can ask."
Pittsburgh quarterback Tom Savage was continuously hounded by the Hokies defense, which accumulated eight sacks.
"It's clearly something we've got to clean up," Panthers coach Paul Chryst said of the pass protection. "I think they did a great job, but I think on our part we have to execute better."
Savage completed 13-of-28 passes for 187 yards, with Devin Street accounting for 104 yards on five receptions.
The Panthers (3-2, 2-2) were seeking their first four-game winning streak since 2009.
The Hokies got off to a quick start on offense, producing 10 points on their first two drives of the game.
Thomas hit freshman tight end Kalvin Cline on a corner route for a 27-yard touchdown and Journell drilled a career-long 48-yard field goal.
Conversely, the Pittsburgh offensive unit struggled to find a rhythm and went the entire first quarter without registering a first down.
The Panthers finally got a big play from Savage, who converted a 3rd-and-10 from the Pitt 32 by throwing a 48-yard pass to a streaking Street down the right sideline late in the opening half. The long completion set up Chris Blewitt's 47-yard field goal with 14 seconds remaining.
Following the break, the Panthers defense had a difficult time getting off the field as the Hokies converted a handful of third downs.
Virginia Tech twice faced 3rd-and-long on the opening possession of the third quarter, and Thomas hooked up with Demitri Knowles for gains of 40 and 18 yards to move the chains.
The Pitt defense prevented the Hokies from reaching the end zone, but Journell did kick a 37-yard field goal to restore Virginia Tech's 10-point advantage. Journell made good from 42 yards on the next Hokies drive after two more third-down conversions.
The redshirt senior missed a field goal to begin the fourth quarter, but hit a 23-yarder with 3:27 to play.
Savage kept Pitt's hopes of a comeback alive with a 9-yard touchdown run, but, perhaps fittingly, he was swarmed on the 2-point conversion and fumbled.
The Hokies are now 8-5 all-time against Pitt ... Thomas led the Virginia Tech rushing attack with 27 yards on 16 carries ... Knowles caught five passes for 79 yards ... Street is one reception shy of tying Latef Grim's school record of 178 ...The game didn't feature a single turnover.