Saturday, November 3, 2012

Notre Dame Survives Scare, Beats Pitt in Triple OT To Move To 9-0

                            Cierre Woods and The Fighting Irish survive a scare and avoid the upset by the Pitt Panthers to move to 9-0 on the season and keep their National Championship hopes alive.

     In what seemed like what would be a cake walk, Notre Dame survived a scare from Pitt, where they were down 20-6 at the start of the 4th quarter. The Fighting Irish scored early in the beginnning of the 4th on a 11 yd TD Pass from Everett Golson to T.J. Jones, but would miss the extra point making the score now just 20-12.  Notre Dame moved the ball down the field once again and had 2nd and goal when Golson was picked off in the endzone by Pitt Defender, K'Waun Williams.

     Notre would however force Pitt to a 3 & out and got the ball back with just over 3 minutes to play in regulation, still needing a TD and 2 point conversion to send the game into OT. It only took Notre Dame two plays to drive 50 yards after a 45 yd pass and 5yd TD pass to make it 20-18. The Fighting Irish, obviously needing to go for two sent the offense back out on the field and Golson dove into the endzone to convert on the 2 pt. play.

     The game would eventually go into overtime with Pitt receiving the ball first and would have to settle for a FG. Notre Dame would then have a chance to win the game, but like Pitt were forced to kick the field goal and go into a 2nd OT with the score now tied 23-23. Notre Dame this time would receive the ball first and would drive the ball all the way inside the 2. On 2nd & Goal, Notre Dame running back Cierre Wood was on the verge of scoring a TD when he lost control of the ball and Pitt's Jarred Holley recovering the ball in the endzone. With Notre Dame failing to score, all Pitt needed was a Field Goal to win the game. Pitt managed to move the ball only 9 yards on the next three plays, but were still in great position to win the game and spoil the Fighting Irish's perfect season. Pitt's Kicker Kevin Harper had already connected from 39, 21, and 41. With the chance to win it on a 33 yd. FG, Harper kicked just wide to the right, and Notre Dame's perfect season hopes were still alive. The game would now head to a 3rd OT. Pitt started with the ball first and would have to settle for a FG, this time Harper nected on a 44 yarder.

     Notre Dame now with the ball again, needed a FG to send it to a 4th OT, or a TD to win it. Just 5 plays later, Notre Dame took the ball all the wall down to the Pitt 1yd. line and had first and goal. Notre Dame would make sure to hold onto the ball this time around as Golson sneaked it in from the 1 and gave the Fighting Irish the win after coming back from 14 down and with a little luck from Pitt's missed FG, Notre Dame's hope's for a shot at a  National Championship were still alive.

Picture courtesy of- USA Today

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