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Voytik shines in Pitt's Blue-Gold game

| Friday, April 12, 2013, 10:30 p.m.
Chaz Palla | Tribune-Review
Pitt quarterback Chad Voytik rolls out during the Panthers' spring game on Friday, April 12, 2013, at Bethel Park High School.
Chaz Palla | Tribune-Review
Pitt' Ejuan Price breaks up a pass intended for Desmon Brown in the end zone during the Panthers' spring game on Friday, April 12, 2013, at Bethel Park High School.
Chaz Palla | Tribune-Review
Pitt running back Isaac Bennett breaks away from Todd Thomas during the Panthers' spring game on Friday, April 12, 2013, at Bethel Park High School.
Chaz Palla | Tribune-Review
Pitt's Scott Orndoff pulls in a touchdown pass during the Panthers' spring game Friday, April 12, 2013, at Bethel Park High School.
Chaz Palla | Tribune-Review
Pitt's Kevin Weatherspoon pulls in a touchdown pass during the Panthers' spring game on Friday, April 12, 2013, at Bethel Park High School.
Chaz Palla | Tribune-Review
Pitt quarterback Tom Savage drops back to pass during the Panthers' spring game on Friday, April 12, 2013, at Bethel Park High School.
Chaz Palla | Tribune-Review
Pitt tight end Manasseh Garner pulls in a pass during the Panthers' spring game on Friday, April 12, 2013, at Bethel Park High School.
Chaz Palla | Tribune-Review
Pitt running back Isaac Bennett breaks off a 48-yard touchdown run during the Panthers' spring game on Friday, April 12, 2013, at Bethel Park High School.
Pitt coach Paul Chryst (center) stands on the field during the Panthers' spring game on Friday, April 12, 2013, at Bethel Park High School.
Pitt linebacker Anthony Gonzalez (left) stops tight end Manasseh Garner short of a first down during the Panthers' spring game on Friday, April 12, 2013, at Bethel Park High School.

If you looked at the stat sheet Friday night after the Pitt Blue-Gold scrimmage at Bethel Park and saw that quarterback Chad Voytik took three times as many snaps as Tom Savage, you might have thought:

Uh oh: Quarterback controversy.

Forget about it.

“It was by design,” coach Paul Chryst said. “We wanted to get Tommy three or four series and then put Chad in there.

“Tommy has done a lot of good things this spring. I like where he's at. This would be good for Chad to get some good work tonight.”

For the record, Voytik completed 27 of 33 passes for 358 yards and three touchdowns against a defense that was missing four starters who are expected to return this summer. Sacks also were not permitted, as a safeguard from injury.

Freshman tight end Scott Orndoff scored twice, and senior wide receiver Kevin Weatherspoon caught a 65-yard touchdown pass among his 11 receptions for 175 yards.

Savage, who received the majority of the work with the first-team offense prior to Friday, was six of 11 for 80 yards.

Asked what would happen with the quarterback position if the season started now, Chryst didn't take the bait.

“We don't (start now),” he said.

His message to his quarterbacks: “Keep going. Have a great summer (of workouts).”

Voytik, a redshirt freshman, realizes there is a long way to go before Chryst needs to make a decision.

“I've never really thought it was over,” he said. “I'm doing everything I can. We are all working together. It's been good for all of us.”

He believes he is improving.

“The reads are starting to come to me a lot better,” he said. “But I have a lot of work to do.”

Overall, Chryst wasn't especially pleased with his offense that scored six touchdowns in two hours, had some failures in the red zone and fumbled three times.

At least, there were no interceptions.

Isaac Bennett was the lead running back, carrying 20 times for 114 yards, including a 48-yard touchdown run.

“I think Isaac is a little under the radar,” senior wide receiver Devin Street said. “People don't give him as much credit as he deserves.”

The defense played without safeties Ray Vinopal (ankle) and Jason Hendricks (toe), middle linebacker Shane Gordon (neck) and defensive tackle Aaron Donald (family matter).

Jerry DiPaola is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at jdipaola@tribweb.com or via Twitter @JDiPaola_Trib.

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