Wildcats come back against Texas Tech, win 42-35 in overtime

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Junior linebacker Trent Tanking goes in for a tackle on Texas Tech wide reciever Keke Coutee during the game between K-State and Texas Tech in Bill Snyder Family Stadium on Oct. 8, 2016. (Archive photo by George Walker | Collegian Media Group)

Against all odds, the Kansas State football team came away with a huge win on the road in overtime against Texas Tech this Saturday, 42-35.

Senior kicker Matthew McCrane got the scoring going in the first quarter with a 45-yard field goal. The Wildcats jumped out to a 10-0 lead early in the second quarter when junior running back Dalvin Warmack scampered in for a 15-yard run.

Texas Tech cut into the lead when running back Tre King ran for a 25-yard score, but K-State put the lead back to 10 when sophomore quarterback Alex Delton passed to junior wide receiver Byron Pringle for a 19-yard touchdown.

It only took Texas Tech one play to respond when quarterback Nic Shimonek threw to wide receiver Keke Coutee for a 75-yard touchdown. K-State took a 17-14 lead into halftime.

Coutee completed another pass from Shimonek to start out the second half, this time for 34 yards. The Wildcat defense got the better of Shimonek on the next drive when junior defensive back Duke Shelley stepped in front of a pass and returned it 25 yards for a touchdown.

Shimonek would put the Red Raiders in front by 11 points after throwing a one-yard touchdown to wide receiver Dylan Cantrell in the third quarter and a 22-yarder to wide receiver T.J. Vasher early in the fourth quarter.

McCrane cut Texas Tech’s lead to eight points with a 30-yard field goal with just over nine minutes remaining. Texas Tech missed a 31-yard field goal with less than four minutes left to play, leaving the door open for the Wildcats.

Freshman quarterback Skylar Thompson, who took over in the second half for an injured Delton, capped off the drive with a one-yard touchdown run. Thompson passed to sophomore wide receiver Dalton Schoen for the two-point conversion, just barely putting the game into overtime.

In overtime, Thompson threw to Pringle for his second touchdown of the day, this one from eight yards. The Wildcat defense held the Red Raiders out of the end zone long enough to come away with a 42-35 win.

K-State head coach Bill Snyder was pleased with how Thompson performed.

“Skylar plays unlike a freshman,” Snyder said to K-State Sports. “He plays with poise, and I appreciate that a great deal. He made some good choices. Overall, he made some nice throws, quite obviously, and they were pinpoint throws that you couldn’t be off six inches and have the success that a couple of them had. He played very well.”

With a 5-4 record this season, the Wildcats have put themselves in a position to make it to a bowl game. K-State only has to win one of its next three games, two of which are at home, for bowl game eligibility.

K-State will be fighting for bowl eligibility next week when the Wildcats host West Virginia University. The game will kick off at 2:30 p.m. and can be seen on ESPN2.

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