'EFFORT' Puts Cats in Victory Column

Pretty? Not at all. But it was a win, and this week, that's all that matters after Saturday's game with Iowa State. Second-effort plays made the difference between close-loss and narrow-victory.

This one – Kansas State 24, Iowa State 23 – was, as coach Bill Snyder said, "… was meant to be."

But only "meant to be" through outstanding effort on the part of the Wildcats and first-time starting quarterback Grant Gregory.

"I'm not the prettiest quarterback. Things I do aren't always going be how they were drawn up to be, but I feel I give good effort," Gregory said after Saturday's victory.

"I can make some plays that aren't there, but I may not always make the play that is there … unfortunately. But I always give good effort." Consider these effort-plays, and players, in Kansas State's Big 12 opening victory over the Cyclones.

10. K-State punters booted five balls with Iowa State gaining zero yards in returns. (In fact, ISU also had five punts with the Wildcats having zero yards in returns.)

9. With a target on his back, KSU dasher Daniel Thomas still managed to rush for 96 yards, plus caught five passes for 38 yards.

8. Salute Josh Cherry for being true on his only field goal attempt of 39 yards. It was only his second make of the season in seven tries.

7. Linebacker Alex Hrebec had his second straight double-figure tackle game with 11 stops – five solos and six assists.

6. K-State's opening drive was one of 13 plays that covered 89 yards and ran 7:00 off the clock.

5. The Wildcat defense forced three straight three-and-outs with the game tied in the fourth quarter. The ISU drives covered 8, 3 and 5 yards.

4. Trailing 17-10 going into the fourth quarter, Grant Gregory moved out the pocket to loop a 16-yard pass to Lamark Brown in the end zone to tie the game at 17-all.

3 & 2. At the 5:36 mark, Gregory scrambled away from traffic, roamed to his right, and fired a strike to Brandon Banks, who made the in-traffic catch and sprinted into the end zone with what would prove to be the game-winning points.

1. Emmanuel Lamur made "the" effort play of the game blocking Iowa State's extra-point attempt with 32 seconds remaining in a one-point game. Iowa State had connected on its last 47 extra-point attempts.

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