Pitt tried to muster a late rally, but ultimately came up short, losing to Louisville, 45-35, at Heinz Field Saturday.
The Cardinals swung the game by outscoring the Panthers 21-0 in the third quarter, turning a 21-17 halftime deficit into a 38-21 lead.
Louisville quarterback Teddy Bridgewater completed 17 of 26 passes for 304 yards and a touchdown. Running back Senorise Perry had four touchdowns for the Cardinals (6-0, 1-0 Big East).
Pitt's offense looked like it was clicking in the first half, and Todd Thomas returned a block punt for a touchdown to put the Panthers (2-4, 0-3 Big East) ahead at the break.
On the first play of the second half, Bridgewater found receiver DeVante Parker for a 75-yard touchdown pass, and Perry added two more touchdowns in the quarter.
The Panthers cut the lead to 10 early in the fourth quarter, and with a chance to cut into the lead even more, Pitt coach Paul Chryst opted to go for it on 4th-and-8 from the Louisville 22. Quarterback Tino Sunseri overthrew Cameron Saddler, though, and the drive came up empty.
Sunseri finished 28 of 37 for 287 yards and two touchdowns. Rushel Shell carried the load for the Panthers on the ground, with 18 carries for 96 yards and a score.
Pitt returns to action next week when they'll face Buffalo on the road.
First Published October 13, 2012 6:30 PM