East Carolina Edges Tar Heels 34-31
Sept. 8, 2007
GREENVILLE, N.C. (AP) -- Patrick Pinkney threw for 406 yards and three touchdowns in his first start and Ben Hartman shook off three missed field goals to kick the winner on the final play in East Carolina's 34-31 win over North Carolina on Saturday night.
Chris Johnson added two touchdown catches and a rushing score for the Pirates (1-1), who managed to hold on for thrilling victory in their home opener against their instate rival. It was only East Carolina's second victory in 11 tries -- the last coming 32 years ago -- against the Tar Heels (1-1).
Pinkney, a former third-stringer, completed 31 of 41 passes and finished with the second-best passing game in school history. Hartman had missed field goals of 30, 32 and 37 yards before nailing the 39-yard kick on the final play, sending the purple-clad Pirates spilling onto the field in celebration.
Brandon Tate scored three touchdowns for North Carolina, which suffered its first loss under new coach Butch Davis. Redshirt freshman T.J. Yates threw for 344 yards and three touchdowns for the Tar Heels, who had plenty of chances themselves to pull this one out. That included a botched snap on a 52-yard field goal for the lead in the final minute, setting up East Carolina's final drive.