Football Falls at No. 14 West Virginia

Wes Thompson
Wes Thompson

Morgantown, W.Va. – The Youngstown State football team was defeated 52-17 by No. 14 West Virginia on Saturday evening in front of 58,446 fans at Milan Puskar Stadium.

The Penguins fall to 0-2 while the Mountaineers improve to 2-0. This was the second meeting between the two schools in the last three years. In 2016, the Penguins fell 38-21 at West Virginia.

For the game, Tevin McCaster had 14 carries for 72 yards and touchdown while his counterpart Christian Turner carried the ball 10 times for 48 yards. VanGorder completed 11-of-24 for 157 yards for one touchdown and threw one interception. Zach Farrah had a big day receiving hauling in six passes for 135 yards.

Montgomery VanGorder completed 11-of-24 passes for 157 yards with a touchdown and an interception.

On defense, Chrispin Lee registered a career-high 15 tackles while Will Latham had eight tackles and one interception.

West Virginia received the opening kickoff and marched right down the field before Latham intercepted a Will Grier pass at the 23-yardline to give YSU the ball. After being forced to punt, Mark Schuler pinned the Mountaineers at their own one-yard line. On their very next drive, West Virginia went 99 yards on 10 plays to take a 7-0 lead. Alec Sinkfield capped off the drive with a nine-yard touchdown run.

The Mountaineers extended their lead to 14-0 early in the second quarter when Will Grier found Gary Jennings for an 11-yard touchdown pass. The Penguins responded with a touchdown on their very next possession to bring the score to 14-7. YSU's 10 play, 75-yard drive was capped off with a 4-yard touchdown pass from VanGorder to Miles Joiner. West Virginia extended their lead to 21-7 with only a minute left in the half. Grier connected with Garry Jennings for a 24-yard touchdown pass.

In the first half, West Virginia had 305 yards of total offense while YSU had 111 yards. Tevin McCaster lead charge on the ground with eight carries for 37 yards. Through the air, VanGorder was 3-10 for 23 yards and a touchdown.

West Virginia opened the second half scoring started with a 33-yard touchdown pass to push their lead to 28-7. The Penguins answered with a touchdown of their own on a 6 play 75-yard drive that was finished by a 13-yard touchdown run from McCaster. The Mountaineers responded with a 14-play 82-yard touchdown drive to regain a 35-14 lead. The drive featured a pass interference call on fourth down against YSU to help extend the drive. After West Virginia took a 42-14 lead, Zach Kennedy knocked in a 45-yard field at the end of the third quarter to make the score 42-17. It was all West Virginia in the fourth quarter as they increased their lead to 52-17.

West Virginia quarterback Will Grier was efficient for the game, completing 21-of-26 for 332 yards, four touchdowns and one interception. Grier has touchdown passes of 24, 33 and 40 yards, including two to Gary Jennings.

The Penguins are back in action next Saturday when they host Valparaiso at 2 p.m. at Stambaugh Stadium.