Kansas State Victory Key For Tech

After the crippling 51-21 loss the Texas Longhorns dealt the Red Raiders, some looked at Saturday's game against Kansas State as a must win. Well, Tech not only won, but they won on the road. In the beast that is the Big XII conference, any road win is a good win.

Even though Kansas State is not having a powerful year like some are used to, the Red Raiders are glad to be back to their winning ways.

"That's what is good about college football," Tech linebacker Mike Smith said. "You play bad one week, but you have another week to play, so we were just excited to get on the field and play another game. We got back on track and we're still competing."

Tech coach Mike Leach said his guys could have closed the door on the Wildcats earlier in the game, but that it is due to the heart of Kansas State and their team.

"We had times where we could have put them away and we can't miss those opportunities," Leach said. "The good news was I thought we had contributions to the win on all three sides of the ball."

Tech did receive a solid performance on all sides of the ball.

On offense, Tech quarterback Sonny Cumbie was 27-40 for 327 yards and two touchdowns. Receiver Trey Haverty stepped up in the absence of receivers Bristol Olomua and Nehemiah Glover - who left the game in the first quarter with an undisclosed injury - and caught eight passes for 98 yards and a touchdown.

One of the most telling signs from the weekend was that Tech had zero turnovers.

On defense, Tech held the Wildcats' heralded running back, Darren Sproles, to 83 yards on 18 carries. The defense also did a good job containing the Wildcats on third down, only allowing 7-16 on third down conversions.

The defense also had one monster of a play. It was the play that put the game away.

As the Wildcats were driving in the fourth quarter, defensive end Adell Duckett snared a Dylan Meier pass out of the air and returned it twenty-four yards to all but seal the Tech victory.

The final nail was put into the coffin when, on the next play, Taurean Henderson took a handoff 43 yards for a touchdown.

The game would not be complete without mentioning a solid special teams effort -- which was highlighted with Danny Amendola's 89-yard punt return for a touchdown in the third quarter. Tech has now improved their road record to 3-2 on the year. Tech has beaten both Kansas State and Kansas on the road while putting up a harsh fight in Norman against the Oklahoma Sooners.

Winning on the road was something Tech struggled with last year. Tech was 1-3 last year when they were on the road in conference play.

Coach Leach said distractions are the primary factor when going on the road to win games.

"No matter where you play there's going to be a crowd and there's going to be energy," Leach said. "The energy of a football game alone can be drawn whether you're home or on the road. You can't hear what they're saying anyway."

Tech has to travel one more time this season and it will be against a familiar foe: Texas A&M.

Tech will host the Baylor Bears this Saturday at 1 p.m.


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