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The Turning Point: Ryan Switzer's second punt return

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Ryan Switzer's second punt return put Pitt out of the game for good.

Ryan Switzer proved to be the difference for UNC yesterday.
Ryan Switzer proved to be the difference for UNC yesterday.
Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sport

In one of the crazier games in recent memory, Pitt's 34-27 loss to North Carolina had a key turning point early on with Tom Savage's fumble in the first quarter and that was it for a while. Finally, in the second half, there was a flurry of key moments, but unfortunately for the Panthers the last one was by the Tar Heels' freshman wide receiver Ryan Switzer.

We were going to get all cute on you and say it was Tommy Hibbard's lucky roll on the previous North Carolina drive that put Pitt inside its own ten-yard line, but with Switzer's great day, we had to give it to #3. Switzer's second touchdown on a punt return of the game (his first was a 65-yarder at the very end of the second half) put the game in control of the Tar Heels and they would not allow Pitt to tie it up again.

The play took away a gutsy performance by Tom Savage and Pitt who came all the way back from a 27-3 deficit in the second half to knot up the game late. The Panthers defense then forced UNC to punt. They did not have a strong punt and the ball landed around the Pitt 30, only to watch it roll all the way down inside the ten-yard line. From there, Pitt took a three and out, and Matt Yoklic booted the ball from deep in his own territory. Yoklic's kick was actually a good one as it hung up for a while and Switzer fielded the ball at the UNC 39-yard line. The freshman took over from there and made a few cut backs and nifty moves during the run to take it to the house and give everyone the final score of 34-27.

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