BLOG: Texas defense stands tough, Longhorns earn hard-fought win

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MORGANTOWN, W. Va (KXAN) — The last time the Longhorns went to Morgantown, they were fighting for bowl eligibility. Texas defeated Will Grier and the Mountaineers in 2017 for the sixth win of the season.

The expectations around the program are much different for this trip, and Texas avoided looking ahead to next week against Oklahoma with a 42-31 win against the Mountaineers.

This live blog will be updated as the game progresses

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There’s no doubt the Mountaineers were fired up for this one. This is their biggest home game of the season and some are starting to consider the Longhorns a Big 12 rival.

Live Blog

West Virginia first possession

What happened: The Mountaineers couldn’t have asked for a better start to the game. After a personal foul on defensive back B.J. Foster and a pass interference on D’Shawn Jamison. West Virginia quarterback Austin Kendall let it rip to Sam James for a 44-yard touchdown.

You figured the Mountaineers would test the Longhorns secondary early and they did with some success

Score: West Virginia leads 7-0

Texas first possession

What happened: The Longhorns offense had its chance to respond. They put themselves in bad third down situations three times and Sam Ehlinger converted every time. They couldn’t convert on another third down conversion settling for a 42-yard Cameron Dicker field goal attempt. Dicker missed it wide left feeding the West Virginia crowd frenzy.

Score: West Virginia leads 7-0

West Virginia second possession

Texas was able to silence the crowd for a moment. Sophomore linebacker Dele Adeoye notched the first interception of his Longhorns career on an errant pass from Austin Kendall. Adeoye took it back to the West Virginia 27-yard line.

Score: 7-0 West Virginia

MORGANTOWN, WV – OCTOBER 05: Ayodele Adeoye #40 of the Texas Longhorns runs with the ball after intercepting a pass in the first quarter against the West Virginia Mountaineers at Mountaineer Field on October 5, 2019 in Morgantown, West Virginia. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)

Texas second possession

What happened: Sudden change means go for it all. On the second play of the drive, Ehlinger went deep looking for big-bodied receiver Malcolm Epps. Epps came down with it in the back of the end zone for the Longhorns touchdown. This is Epps’ first touchdown of his Texas career.

Score: Tied at 7

West Virginia third possession

What happened: The Longhorns stopped West Virginia on a three-and-out, but they missing B.J. Foster for the remainder of the game. Foster crashed down hard on a pass play in the flat to to Kennedy McKoy. Foster appeared to be shaken up and was attended to by the medical staff in the Longhorns injury tent. The play was reviewed for targeting on Foster, but it was overturned.

INJURY REPORT

The Longhorns are dropping early in this contest. Molly McGrath of ESPN provided an injury report from the sideline. Keaontay Ingram reportedly was pointing to his neck, B.J. Foster’s injury is to his shoulder and Kris Brown left the game with a thigh injury in first drive of the first quarter.

The Longhorns are so beat up in the secondary. Safety Brandon Jones and cornerback Kobe Boyce are the only healthy players in the unit that were expected to have an impact at the start of the season.

End of the 1st: Tied at 7

West Virginia 5th possession

What happened: West Virginia T.J. Simmons broke off an explosive play for 44 yards thanks to some poor Texas tackling. The five play, 60 yard drive ended with an Austin Kendall one-yard touchdown run.

This has definitely turned into the trap game for Texas.

Score: West Virginia leads 14-7

Texas 5th possession

What happened: After each West Virginia touchdown, the Longhorns have responded with a touchdown drive of their own. Ehlinger led the Longhorns on an 11-play, 69-yard drive for the equalizing touchdown. Senior receiver John Burt caught the touchdown pass from Ehlinger. It’s only Burt’s second catch of the season.

Score: Tied at 14

West Virginia 6th possession

What happened: Evan Staley missed a 36-yard field goal to keep the score even at 14.

Texas 6th possession

What happened: The Longhorns grabbed their first lead of the game after the missed West Virginia field goal. Cade Brewer made a great play on the ball for a 25-yard reception during the series. Ehlinger scored just his second rushing touchdown of the season on a 13-yard run.

Score: Texas leads 21-14

Final possession of first half- West Virginia

What happened: Head coach Neal Brown ran a lot of clock in the final possession only to settle for a 47-yard field goal attempt. Staley missed the kick so we go to the half with Texas leading 21-14.

West Virginia first possession of second half

What happened: D’Shawn Jamison appeared to be ready for primetime after making a great play on the ball for an interception early in the third quarter. The Texas defense is answering the call after a shaky start to the game.

Score: Texas leads 21-14

Texas 4th possession of second half

What happened: Ehlinger made his first big mistake of the 2019 season throwing his second interception of the season. The first pick of the season was on a tipped pass against Oklahoma State — this was just a bad throw. Ehlinger was looking for John Burt deep down the middle of the field, but he was triple-covered. A personal foul penalty on Texas after the interception return put the Mountaineers in the red zone.

West Virginia possession, second half

What happened: It appears the Texas defense is growing up before our eyes. Stuck in a nearly unwinnable situation, the Longhorns defense held the Mountaineers to a short field goal.

End of 3rd quarter: Texas leads 21-17

West Virginia fourth quarter

What happened: Austin Kendall threw his third interception of the game backed into their own end of the field. B.J. Foster, who missed part of the game with injury, deflected the ball in the air and caught it on his back.

Texas next possession

What happened: The Longhorns needed to turn the turnover into points with a slim four point lead. Receiver Devin Duvernay obliged on a handoff from 13 yards out.

Score: Texas leads 28-17

West Virginia next possession

What happened: Two plays into the drive, Kendall turned it over again with his fourth interception of the game. D’Shawn Jamison earned his second interception of the game and returned it back to the Mountaineers’ 33-yard line.

Texas ensuing possession

What happened: We have a BIG MAN touchdown. Texas pulled out a trick play to put this game away. Ehlinger moved to his right before throwing behind to sophomore left tackle Sam Cosmi. Cosmi ran the ball in from 12 yards out for the touchdown.

Score: Texas leads 35-17

Ehlinger added his second rushing touchdown when the game was already decided. He finished with 211 passing and 45 rushing yards and four total touchdowns.

FINAL: The Longhorns walk out of Morgantown with a hard-fought 42-31 win.

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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