Husker rally falls short

Nebraska’s 21 point rally in the fourth quarter took No. 7 Texas Tech into overtime, but an interception on the Huskers’ lone drive in the extra period ended NU’s upset hopes in a 37-31 loss at Jones Stadium on Saturday afternoon.

Nebraska quarterback Joe Ganz hit senior wide receiver Todd Peterson on a 17-yard touchdown strike with 29 seconds left to cap the Huskers’ 14-point fourth-quarter comeback and tie the score at 24 to end regulation.

NU chose to play defense on the opening possession of overtime and Texas Tech scored on a reverse play from two yards out just four plays later. Despite the score, the door was left open by the Red Raiders when Donnie Carona’s extra-point was blocked by Zach Potter to leave the Huskers 25 yards from victory.

On NU’s possession, Ganz overshot wide receiver Nate Swift on his first attempt, before running from heavy pressure on the Huskers’ second play of the drive. Ganz flipped the ball up the field in an attempt to avoid the sack, but his pass was intercepted by Texas Tech to end the game and NU’s hopes of an impressive upset. The interception was the only turnover of the game by either team and it ended an otherwise impressive performance by Ganz.

The senior completed a career-high 36 passes on 44 attempts for 349 yards and two touchdowns on the afternoon for a career-best 81.8 completion percentage. Not only did Ganz outperform Tech quarterback Graham Harrell statistically, Ganz also executed NU’s offensive game plan to near perfection. The Husker offense possessed the ball for 40:12 in regulation, keeping Harrell and the high-powered Red Raider offense off the field.

Ganz helped Nebraska rack up 471 yards of total offense, including 357 passing yards and 114 yards on 35 rushing attempts on the ground. Ganz and the Husker offense also had 80 offensive plays, compared to just 48 for Texas Tech, but the Red Raiders still managed 421 total yards, including 284 through the air and 137 on the ground.

Harrell completed 20-of-25 passes for 284 yards and two touchdowns on the day, while Crabtree led the Red Raiders with five catches for 89 yards and two scores. Batch led the Tech rushing game with 97 yards on 10 carries, while Woods added 37 yards on 10 totes.

Nebraska will complete a two-game road swing in Big 12 Conference action next Saturday, when the Huskers take on Iowa State in Ames on Oct. 18. Kickoff is set for 11:30 a.m. with live national television coverage provided by Versus.

The Huskers slipped to 3-3 overall and 0-2 in the Big 12 with the loss, while Texas Tech improved to 6-0 on the year and 2-0 in conference play.
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