WVU Football Unites to Defeat Texas Tech 31 – 26
In the first time this season, and perhaps the first time in a long time – WVU football came together, united on all fronts, to guarantee themselves a win against Texas Tech. Against a team who was able to put up 52-points against TCU and 53-points on Oklahoma State, the Mountaineers were able to shut their scoring down. The defense worked hard to prevent the score from turning to the Red Raiders favor, but this time they weren’t alone in doing so.
The offensive running game from West Virginia was outstanding Saturday against Texas Tech. Wendell Smallwood ran for a season-high 163-yards, earning a touchdown from 16-yards out for the Mountaineers. Rushel Shell also came up big for the Mountaineer, with 111-yards and two touchdowns from a short distance. Of the 449-yards WVU was able to gather, 300 of them came from runs. All-in-all, the Mountaineers were able to play a complete, united game of football on Saturday. Against a team that may become eligible for a bowl game after their game against Kansas State, this win could set the tone for the remainder of the season for WVU.
While the offense ran the ball against a defense who has only allowed about 270-yards against the per game, the defense was also hard at work stopping the Texas Tech offensive. The Red Raiders were only able to walk away from Saturday’s game with 378-yards, falling well-short of their season average of 603-yards.
Skyler Howard completed 12-of-23 passes – however five of his passes completed to Ka’Ruan White for 80 yards.
It’s hard to name just one hero in the win over Texas Tech. However, there are a few names who come to mind when you think about Saturday’s game.
Smallwood’s running game accounted for much of the Mountaineer victory. During the second half – and a close score – Smallwood took the ball from the Texas Tech 47 to the 129-yard line in 3 consecutive runs after a personal fowl by the Red Raiders. Howard attempted a pass to Jovon Durante that fell incomplete, before returning to Smallwood on the next play. Smallwood ran the football to the 19-yard line, earning perhaps the most important third down of the game.
Smallwood was given the ball again and again achieved significant yards, landing the Mountaineers at the 6-yard line. Howard attempted a short run into the end zone, which didn’t result in a TD, but did force a personal foul when his helmet was removed by Micah Awe during play. Howard was able to run the clock out, taking a knee 3 times and ending the game with a score of 31-26.
Preparing for Texas
After a rough October schedule, no one was expecting the Mountaineers to pull together and finish the rest of the season on a positive note. However, West Virginia was able to unite and defeat a team that may be bowl-eligible after next Saturday’s game.
The Mountaineers could have come into the game against Texas Tech with their heads down and no one would blame them after their performance through October. Fortunately for Mountaineer fans, the WVU Football team has finally, after 4 consecutive losses, played a full game of football. All four quarters, down the the very last minutes of the game the offense, defense, and special teams began and completed every play as if the next point determined the win. It’s that drive and a winning attitude that will carry the team to victory over Texas on November 14th at noon.
What do you think our mountaineers have to do to guarantee a win on the road against the Longhorns?