The West Virginia football team took a tough loss to No. 11 Oklahoma State on Saturday afternoon, in Morgantown, 24-3.
The West Virginia offense struggled to get much of anything going on the day against Oklahoma State’s defense while only going for 17 rushing yards as opposed to the Cowboys 103 rushing yards. Mountaineer starting quarterback Jarret Doege was also sacked seven times on Saturday totaling -35 yards on the ground.
The Mountaineers came out strong on the day as the first positive play of the day came on the second play from scrimmage on a Jarret Doege to Sam James 32-yard connection. The pass connection set up a 30-yard Casey Legg field goal later in the drive to give West Virginia the early advantage six minutes into regulation, 3-0.
The Mountaineer defense proved to be effective in the first half against a tough Cowboys offense as junior defensive lineman Taijh Alston came up on a senior running back Jaylen Warren stop on a third and four on the opening Oklahoma State drive.
Senior defensive lineman Dante Stills then stepped up in his usual role on the very next drive pinning back Warren for a loss of three yards. Stills then picked off a junior quarterback Spencer Sanders pass that was deflected and snatched by the senior Mountaineer the very next play.
The opening drive of the second quarter also saw sophomore defensive lineman Akheem Mesidor sack Sanders for a loss of 10 yards. The sack helped the Mountaineers as it led to a Cowboy punt from the 50-yard line.
Oklahoma State was finally able to get on the scoreboard early in the second quarter on a Sanders to senior wide receiver Tay Martin seven-yard touchdown strike in the back right corner of the end zone. The drive also included a Sanders to sophomore receiver Brennan Presley 18-yard strike down the left sideline.
The Cowboys were able to tack on three more points near the end of the half as an 11-play drive concluded with a Tanner Brown 34-yard field goal boot for the seven-point, 10-3 margin heading to the locker room.
About halfway into the third quarter, the Mountaineers were set to get the ball back following a defensive incomplete pass stop between Sanders and Martin. The punt was however fumbled by redshirt sophomore Graeson Malashevich at the 29-yard line and put Oklahoma State in perfect scoring position.
Only four plays after the muffed punt recovery, Sanders found Martin yet again in the same place in the back-right corner of the end zone on a 12-yard strike for the two-touchdown advantage, 17-3.
The Cowboys only built on their lead in the beginning of the fourth quarter on a Warren 13-yard touchdown rush that looked like he went untouched into the end zone for the 24-3 margin. The score was set up by a Sanders to freshman Jayden Bray 28-yard pass connection to move the ball up to the 13-yard line.
Even through all the sacks, Doege’s frustrating day was not over as with five minutes left in regulation the quarterback made a pass intended for Bryce Ford-Wheaton but was picked off by senior cornerback Christian Holmes at the West Virginia 44-yard line.
The Mountaineers will now hit the road and travel to Kansas State next Saturday with game time yet to be announced.
(Top Photo: Ethan Bock)