The Red Raiders (4-1, 1-1 in Big 12 Conference play) for the fourth time this season headed into the locker room at halftime trailing, but unlike the previous three times this has happened, Tech was unable to complete the comeback.
No. 24 Texas A&M (3-2, 1-1), despite having two late-game collapses in its previous two games against then – No. 7 Oklahoma State and No. 15 Arkansas, held off the Red Raiders final attempts down the stretch winning the final meeting between the squads as conference opponents, 45-40.
"Well not a lot of consolation, other than we became a little better team tonight," Texas Tech head coach Tommy Tuberville said. "We fought hard, and I was proud of the guys of how we gave ourselves a chance at the end. We made too many mistakes."
The Aggies came into the game with a fire it was only one minute and 56 seconds into the game and A&M already had a 7-0 lead.
Seth Doege, who finished the night 44-for-66 for 391 yards and three touchdowns, got on the field and quickly struck right back with a two-yard pass to Adam James in the back of the end zone.
Tech and A&M would trade punches throughout the first quarter, before the Aggies really got their feet under them in the second.
A&M's running threat was a fear of many as Tech's defensive unit has had problems stopping the run in virtually every game this season, and the Aggies exploited this weakness.
The Aggies finished the night with 205 yards amassed on just the ground alone with the majority of those yards coming off 21 carries for 125 yards from Gray.
"That was one of the first things I said was the fact that we ended up being three runs because they were blitzing us in our sub-groups," Texas A&M head coach Mike Sherman said about choosing to rely on the run game. "I didn't want it to just be a throw-fest out there so I wanted to have some balance running the football."
Coming out of the half, trailing 31-20, Tech began to chip away at it with a field goal pulling within eight points.
The Red Raiders got another field goal opportunity to pull
within five points, but Dustin Harris came off the edge and blocked the kick,
allowing Terrence Frederick to take it back 65 yards for a score making it
With the momentum swinging back their way, Tech was on the five-yard line staring right into the end zone when an incomplete pass to Eric Stephens turned into something much worse.
Damontre Moore of Texas A&M and Stephens collided and the Tech junior running back had his knee pinned awkwardly and with that the stadium fell quiet.
Trainers attended to Stephens, but the cart had to be
summoned to take him out of the Jones that had been rocking all night until
that moment. When he left the game Stephens had recorded another 100-yard
rushing game going for 103 on the ground and two catches for 12 yards as well.
The Red Raiders would score making it 38-30, but Tech would pull close one more time, but with not enough time on the clock and hoping for a lucky bounce on an on-side kick that happen the allowed the Aggies to kneel their way to victory, 45-40.
Despite getting their first loss of the season, Doege said there are more games to be played and they have to prepare for the next one against Kansas State.
"It's just one of those things, it's a loss, it is what it
is we got to learn from it," he said. "We have a big game next week, it's
important that us older guys, like (Alex) Torres, guys like that keep the
energy, and the thought process positive in the locker room. Because we have a big game coming up
next weekend, Kansas State coming in, they're going to be a Top 20 team and one
of the best defenses in the country.
"We need to be ready to go for that one."
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