Ehlinger leads No. 11 Texas over West Virginia | TribLIVE.com
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Ehlinger leads No. 11 Texas over West Virginia

Associated Press
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AP
Texas quarterback Sam Ehlinger celebrates a touchdown against West Virginia on Saturday, Oct. 5, 2019, in Morgantown, W.Va.
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AP
West Virginia wide receiver Sam James catches a touchdown pass during the first half against Texas on Oct. 5, 2019, in Morgantown, W.Va.

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — Sam Ehlinger threw two touchdown passes and ran for two more scores, and No. 11 Texas converted three turnovers into TDs in a 42-31 victory over West Virginia on Saturday.

Ehlinger and Texas (4-1, 2-0 Big 12) beat the Mountaineers (3-2, 1-1) on the road for the second straight time.

The Longhorns had plenty of motivation for this one. Ehlinger and several Texas players were upset last year after several Mountaineers flashed “horns down” signs during West Virginia’s 42-41 win in Austin, Texas. Ehlinger noted in a tweet that was later deleted: “Do not think it will be forgotten.”

Ehlinger finished 18 of 33 for 211 yards. He threw just his second interception of the season that West Virginia turned into a third-quarter field goal.

The Texas defense showed no signs of slowing down despite injuries that have decimated the secondary. The Longhorns intercepted Austin Kendall four times, twice by cornerback D’Shawn Jamison.

Texas needed those turnovers to break open a close game.

Texas coach Tom Herman praised his defense for making key plays when West Virginia had a chance to retake the lead after halftime. That came as the Longhorns’ offense sputtered, punting on four of its first five drives in the second half while also having Ehlinger’s interception.

“We knew this was going to be a really tough environment,” Herman said.

B.J. Foster’s pick early in the fourth quarter led to Devin Duvernay’s 13-yard scoring run. Kendall was intercepted on the next drive by Jamison at the West Virginia 18, and Ehlinger threw a lateral to offensive lineman Samuel Cosmi, who rumbled 12 yards into the end zone for a 35-17 lead.

Kendall threw three TD passes, including pair of fourth-quarter scores, and had a 1-yard scoring run. He finished 31 of 46 for a career-high 367 yards.

West Virginia coach Neal Brown came to Kendall’s defense. He said the Oklahoma graduate transfer’s first interception was a misread, but the other three were the fault of the receivers, who either had a chance to catch the ball or ran the wrong route.

“I had a pretty good eye on the field, and I thought the kid played well, played his best game,” Brown said. “We were in the game offensively because of him.”

The Longhorns stayed focused in their first trip outside of the state of Texas this season and showed they were not looking ahead to next week’s Red River Rivalry game against No. 6 Oklahoma.

The Mountaineers started a brutal October stretch with a bust. They also have Iowa State, No. 6 Oklahoma and Baylor on the schedule this month.

West Virginia hosts the Cyclones next Saturday after Iowa State embarrassed the Mountaineers, 30-14, a year ago.

Categories: Sports | WVU
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