ShareThis Page

West Virginia surrenders 24-point lead, loses in triple overtime

| Saturday, Nov. 30, 2013, 8:33 p.m.
Barry Reeger | Tribune-Review
Iowa State tight end E.J. Bibbs (11) celebrates his 2-point conversion in front of West Virginia linebacker Isaiah Bruce (31) during the third overtime of the Mountaineers' 52-44 loss Saturday, Nov. 30, 2013, at Milan Puskar Stadium in Morgantown, W.Va.

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — Iowa State, ranked 97th in the nation in scoring, came back from a 24-point deficit — and scored 17 points in the final 9:38 — to force overtime and then defeat West Virginia, 52-44, on the third possession of extra time.

Iowa State won the game on a 25-yard touchdown pass from Grant Rohach to Justin Coleman and 2-point conversion pass to E.J. Bibbs. WVU's final chance failed when a pass by quarterback Clint Trickett was tipped and caught short of the goal line on fourth down.

Iowa State was inspired when a fake punt on fourth-and-17 by Kirby Van Der Kamp in the fourth quarter gained 21 yards and a crucial first down. The Cyclones were trailing by 17 points at the time.

It was Van Der Kamp's sixth successful fake of the season and led to a 62-yard TD pass that cut the deficit to 38-28.

Iowa State won its second consecutive game to finish 3-9. The Mountaineers closed a disastrous 4-8 season.

A crowd of 33,735, the second smallest in Milan Puskar Stadium history, saw WVU give away the game after leading 31-7.

“We have talked about finishing all year long. It is something that will be addressed in the offseason,” West Virginia coach Dana Holgorsen said. “We have had issues closing games this year. Why can't we close games? It comes down to execution and a burning desire to win.

“You need a collection of guys not wanting to let each other down and coaches not wanting to let the players down. Obviously we don't have that right now.”

It was the other way on the other side.

“We just stayed focused and kept on playing,” Iowa State coach Paul Rhoads said. “You can't rush things in a situation like that. The fake punt probably provided a bit of an energy boost, but we never had a surprise onside or anything. We just kept playing, trusting that our defense could put up some stops and that our offense could do the job.”

Rohach did the job, throwing for 330 yards and four touchdowns while also running for a 54-yard score.

Mario Alford, who had been coming along all season as he got accustomed to West Virginia football after playing in junior college, caught eight passes for 215 yards, including a 76-yard touchdown; senior running back Charles Sims surpasses 1,000 rushing yards.

Running back Charles Sims gained 149 yards, including a 76-yard TD run, to become WVU's first 1,000-yard rusher since Noel Devine in 2009.

“That meant a lot,” Sims said. “It's something I can cherish, but I would have liked the win.”

Trickett, who had missed the previous game with a concussion, completed 21 of 37 passes for 356 yards and two TDs. However, he threw an interception with 2:46 remaining that set up Iowa State's tying touchdown.

Iowa State had trailed 17-0 and 31-7 before rallying in the fourth quarter to tie the score 38-38 when Rohach hit Justin Coleman with a 19-yard TD pass with a minute remaining. Iowa State scored 17 points in the final 9:38.

The teams traded field goals in the first and second overtime possessions. It was West Virginia's third overtime game of the season.

Iowa State's Cole Netten hit a 40-yard attempt, and WVU's Josh Lambert was good from 41 yards. Both kickers made 26-yard attempts in the second OT.

Bob Hertzel is a freelance writer.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.