The Norman Transcript

Sports

November 18, 2012

Jones engineers game-winning drive vs. Mountaineers

(Continued)

MORGANTOWN, W.V. —

Austin didn’t shake loose until the second half. The Sooners were in complete control of the game and had a chance to put a dagger in the Mountaineers late in the first half.

The Sooners were up 31-17 and had a chance to grab a 21-point lead at the half. The crowd of 50,238 might have called it a night if OU would have punched in another touchdown or been drained further if Michael Hunnicutt’s 37-yard field goal attempt hadn’t sailed wide right.

Instead, a second-half shootout ensued.

West Virginia had the ball seven times in the second half, scoring five touchdowns. OU managed to force a turnover on downs late in the third quarter and batted down West Virginia quarterback Geno Smith’s Hail Mary heave at the end of the game.

Jones, who faced more criticism than any four-year starter in OU’s history, didn’t back down.

After the Mountaineers’ Stedman Bailey scored on an 8-yard touchdown pass from Smith, he led OU on a 7-play, 79-yard drive that ended with 7-yard TD pass to Stills.

After Bailey collected a 40-yard touchdown pass to return the lead to West Virginia, Jones responded yet again.

The 54-yard drive capped the first fourth-quarter comeback in Jones’ 47 career starts.

It all came down to the fourth-down play from the 5-yard line with 24 seconds to go. OU had just called a timeout to go over the final play. The meeting on the sideline ended up being meaningless. The Sooners were going to run a fade to Stills, who had 10 catches for 91 yards and four touchdowns. Jones saw the coverage and changed the play to a slant.

“We were confident the whole time,” Stills said. “I love getting the ball in the red zone. Landry trusts all the receivers and when he puts the ball up there, we’re gonna make a play.”

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