Texas Tech holds on to defeat Arizona State
LUBBOCK, Texas -- Texas Tech let a big lead slip away, but still hung on to defeat Arizona State 52-45 on Saturday night at Jones AT&T Stadium.
Texas Tech wide receiver Dylan Cantrell scored the go-ahead touchdown on a wide receiver sweep to his right with 1:55 left in the fourth quarter.
Then the Red Raiders defense, which gave up 494 total yards, got the stop it needed by stopping Arizona State from gaining a first down on its final possession of the game.
Red Raiders quarterback Nic Shimonek passed for 543 yards and six touchdowns. Cantrell caught eight passes for 160 yards and scored three touchdowns.
Arizona State erased an 18-point deficit in the second half and tied the game when quarterback Manny Wilkins threw to a wide-open N‘Keal Harry in the middle of the field. Harry took the catch-and-run 21 yards for a touchdown.
At that point, the Sun Devils had outscored the Red Raiders 28-10 in the second half.
Texas Tech came out better after a first half in which the Red Raiders and Sun Devils exchanged haymakers.
Shimonek tossed a 12-yard touchdown pass to Keke Coutee, an 11-yarder to Cameron Batson and a 29-yarder to Cantrell as the Red Raiders staked a 21-3 lead.
However, Arizona State punched back as Wilkins connected with wide receiver Kyle Williams for a 3-yard score. Then running back Demario Richard scored on a 1-yard run that cut Texas Tech’s lead to 21-17 with 5:34 remaining in the second quarter.
Texas Tech responded with two touchdowns before the break.
Shimonek threw his fourth touchdown of the half to running back Mason Reed with a 10-yard pass that capped a five-play, 75-yard drive.
Red Raiders special teams player Ja‘Deion High blocked a punt that allowed Texas Tech to take over its final drive of the first half at the Arizona State 27.
Shimonek threw his fifth touchdown pass to Cantrell, covering 14 yards and putting the Red Raiders ahead 35-17 at the break.