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Panthers Top Fighting Irish in 4 Overtime Thriller

Kicker Conor Lee (37) celebrates with holder Andrew Janocko after kicking the game-winning filed goal in the 4th overtime period.

Kicker Conor Lee (37) celebrates with holder Andrew Janocko after kicking the game-winning filed goal in the 4th overtime period.

Nov. 1, 2008

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SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) - Conor Lee kicked a 22-yard field goal in the fourth overtime to give Pittsburgh a 36-33 victory over Notre Dame on Saturday.

LeSean McCoy, who rushed for a season-high 169 yards on 32 carries, set up the game-winning field with an 18-yard run after a 38-yard field goal attempt by Notre Dame's Brandon Walker was wide left. Neither team managed a touchdown in the overtime and Pitt's only lead was the final score.

Pitt (6-2) bounced back from a disappointing loss to Rutgers with a strong effort after trailing 17-3 at halftime. The Panthers, who haven't been to a bowl since the 2004 season, are now bowl eligible and a victory shy of giving coach Dave Wannstedt his first winning record in four seasons.

For the Irish (5-3) it was their third loss to teams with winning records this season, leaving the Irish 0-9 against quality opponents since beating No. 19 Penn State 41-17 in the second game of the 2006 season.

Pitt forced the overtime when they tied the score at 24 with 2:22 left on a 10-yard touchdown pass from Bostick to Jonathan Baldwin on fourth-and-6. The Panthers ran the same play three straight times before Bostick beat Irish cornerback Terrail Lambert for the score.

Bostick, playing with Bill Stull out with a concussion, started the game slow, completing 3-of-6 passes for 24 yards with one interception in the first half. He finished the game 14-of-27 for 164 yards with one touchdown and three interceptions.

McCoy had his fifth straight 100-yard game. Lee had a career-high five field goals, four in overtime.

Jimmy Clausen threw three touchdown passes, including a 6-yard score to Golden Tate with 5:38 left and two touchdowns to Michael Floyd 83 seconds just before halftime. He was 23-of-44 passing for 271 yards with no interceptions.

Floyd, who broke the record for catches by a Notre Dame freshman, had 10 catches for 100 yards and Tate had six for 111.

Pitt tied the score at 17 with a 4-yard run by LaRod Stephens-Howling late in the third quarter and a 1-yard TD lunge by McCoy early in the fourth quarter.

But the Irish, who managed just 7 yards total offense on 10 plays in the third quarter, answered with a 12-play, 75-yard drive to reclaim the lead.