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LUBBOCK, TEXAS -- Weber State saw its playoff hopes slip away Saturday afternoon with the 64-21 loss to the Texas Tech University Red Raiders.
Texas Tech put on an offensive show posting 669 yards, an incredible 439 through the air. WSU collected a respectable 459 yards as quarterbacks Cameron Higgins and Mike Hoke threw for a combined 282 yards.
The Texas Tech offense showed its strength early in the game, scoring three consecutive touchdowns in the first quarter, and three more in the second quarter, all but putting the game away before halftime. The Red Raider defense also scored a safety in the first half, and the Wildcats trailed 44-0 after the first 30 minutes.
"We just couldn't stay in drives," said WSU running back Bo Bolen. "It was just ugly, because we'd get a drive going and then we would shoot ourselves in the foot. They jumped out pretty quick. We were driving pretty well, actually, but then we'd get stopped, and it's hard to catch back up."
WSU running back Josh Booker, who led the Wildcats with 71 rushing yards, said the Red Raiders' defense was effective at stopping what initially appeared to be successful scoring drives for the Wildcats.
"Texas Tech has a really good defense," Booker said. "They have a big, tall team. I got beat up, and I got hit a lot while I was out there. They were a really tough opponent, and I felt privileged to have played against them."
WSU's first points came more than half way through the third quarter on a six-yard touchdown pass from Higgins to receiver Brian Jankowski. The Wildcats scored two touchdowns in the fourth quarter to make the final score a little more respectable. Running back Vai Tafuna scored on a three-yard run and Bolen finished the scoring with a 30-yard touchdown catch from Hoke.
After Bolen made it to the end zone, a Texas Tech defender came into the play late, grabbing Bolen's face mask and throwing him to the ground. Bolen was visibly shaken and slow to get up- reminiscent of the beating the Wildcats took on Saturday.
"I've been face masked pretty bad before," Bolen said, "but that was probably the worst one. He didn't let go. It was frustrating."
Bolen's touchdown was the final score of the game.
According to Football Championship Subdivision guidelines, a team must have at least seven wins against Division I teams in order to be eligible for an at-large bid in the FCS playoffs. The loss to Texas Tech leaves Weber State one win short at 6-5 to end the regular season.
"It's just a little frustrating because I know the talent that we have," Bolen said. "I feel like our record doesn't reflect the talent that we have on this team. It's just a matter of us not playing the kind of football that we should. I feel like the only game that we really played to our abilities was against the University of Montana."
Booker said that, while the season didn't end the way he had hoped, he was still grateful for the opportunity he had to play for WSU this season.
"It was great playing for Weber State this year; playing for my coaches and my teammates, and trying to help put us in the best possible position to be in. Hopefully we can get ready for next year, and get in the playoffs. I feel like we did OK, and we could have done a little bit better. But, it is what it is."