In the second consecutive match, the Florida State team got off to a quick start and then fell completely to one of the worst teams at the Atlantic Coast Games.
Like they did at Louisville two weeks ago, Seminoles looked sharp in their opening match against Pitt and raced with an early 14-3 advantage. They will lose the lead in the second half, starting with midfielder Jordan Travis at halftime and any hopes for a return shortly thereafter.
The struggling Pitt Panthers, who have lost four straight games in the game, have capitalized on some Florida State mistakes and won 41-17. Pitt improved overall to 4-4 (3-4 in ACC), while FSU dropped to 2-5 and 1-5. The defeat ensured that head coach Mike Norvell̵7;s first season at the FSU would end with a losing streak.
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With Travis sidelined with an undisclosed injury, defender James Blackman took over in midfield in the first game of the third quarter and quickly launched an intercept. The Panthers also took advantage of that and beat it for another touch and took the 31-17 advantage.
Freshman Chubba Purdy played the remainder of the game in midfield and barely struggled after a brutal Seminole strike. That group, which played surprisingly well in the first half of the season, had little chance of starting at ball Devontay Love-Taylor had a clear knee injury and Sports Travis sidelined.
Pitt’s defense, which led the nation in siege and dealt to lose, happened in the second half and ultimately limited the score to one point six in the fourth.
The Panthers were also helped by the return of senior midfielder Kenny Pickett, who has missed out on his last two games with a sprained ankle. Pickett completed 21 of 27 passes within 210 yards, and he dived into a touch.
While the final score doesn’t suggest that, Seminoles actually got off to a great start, scoring tackles on their first two drives to a 14-3 lead.
First, they marched 75 meters over 10 innings and scored in a one-meter dive by Principal Wyatt. The former midfielder moved from right to left, stopped behind the center of Maurice Smith, grabbed his chance and entered the backyard to take a 7-3 lead.
Then, in Seminoles’ next possession, QB Jordan Travis pierced Pitt’s defense in third and third place from deep within FSU territory and sprinted for an 88-yard touch. That gave Seminoles a 14-3 advantage in the first half. This is the longest encounter ever made by a Florida midfielder in school history.
The rest of the first half was pretty much catastrophic. Seminoles didn’t make a lot of mistakes, and Pitt capitalized on a series of FSU mistakes to return to the 24-17 lead after the break.
The Panthers got the ball to initiate three tackles in FSU territory and score each touch. FSU’s Parker Grothaus gave Seminoles a little late with a goal 47 yards away before halftime, but they weren’t able to do it in the second half without Travis.
FSU returns to service next Saturday at NC State.
Talk about this story with other Florida football fans on the Tribal Council