MORGANTOWN, W.Va. -- West Virginia erased, built and finally wasted double-digit leads Saturday and lost 37-27 to No. 16 Texas Tech before a crowd of 54,084 at Mountaineer Field.
The Red Raiders trailed 27-16 in the second half, but scored 21 unanswered points and finally took control of the game with a decisive touchdown pass with 61 seconds remaining.
"It was challenge for them for 21/2 quarters for them to have enough fight and will to them to be able to make enough plays to be able to win the game at the end," WVU Coach Dana Holgorsen said. "Obviously, we didn't have that. We started to feel pretty good about ourselves in the middle of the third quarter when it was (27-16), but the game wasn't over.
"We refused to make a play on offense, defense and special teams in the last quarter-and-a-half. We refused to coach well enough to be able to win the game. Obviously, that will be addressed."
Down by three points with 6:14 to go, WVU punted for a fourth straight possession after taking its big lead and the Red Raiders started at their 31-yard line with 4:30 remaining in the game.
After four straight runs and a pair of first downs, TTU ran twice more and faced a third-and-6 at the WVU 32-yard line, but completed a 27-yard pass to Jordan Davis. He had two catches for six yards before that. On third-and-goal from the 10, quarterback Davis Webb found Jace Amaro in the end zone for a touchdown.
"I though it was really smart on their part when it was 30-27 to ... be aggressive and try to score to put the game out of reach," WVU defensive coordinator Keith Patterson said.
The Red Raiders (7-0, 4-0 Big 12) entered ranked No. 3 nationally in passing offense and No. 6 in total offense. They finished with 573 yards, averaged 7.2 yards per play and converted on 9 of 15 third downs.
In his second career start, Webb, the reigning Big 12 Offensive Player of the Week, completed 36 of 50 passes for 462 yards and two touchdowns. Amaro caught nine passes for 136 yards and two touchdowns. Bradley Marquez added eight catches for 112 yards
Webb is starting in place of fellow freshman Baker Mayfield. He completed 12 of 13 passes in the third quarter to ignite the comeback.
"We talk about it all the time: Fortune favors the bold," TTU Coach Kliff Kingsbury said. "We're not going to leave it up to anyone else. We knew it was up to him tomake good throws and he did that."
WVU's Clint Trickett made his third straight start, making him the first of the team's three quarterbacks to do so this season, and finished 27-for-42 for 254 yards. Daikiel Shorts caught nine passes for 78 yards. Dreamius Smith ran 16 times for 89 yards and two scores and Charles Sims added 77 yards on 15 carries.
After taking an 11-point lead in the third quarter, WVU (3-4, 1-3) gained 26 yards and one first down on the next 12 snaps as TTU rallied with its three unanswered scores.
"They probably played harder than we did and probably called better plays than we called, but we called the same plays in the last quarter-and-a-half that was called in the first 21/2.
"Did we get better offensively? We looked better in spurts, but at the end of the game, I think everyone can agree we were as bad as you can possibly be offensively and obviously at the most critical part of the game. That's when you'd like to see the defense rise up and up make stops. We just refused to do that."
WVU led 27-16 early in the second half, its largest lead since beating Georgia State 41-7 five weeks ago. The Mountaineers started the third quarter with back-to-back touchdown drives. The first was extended by a fourth down conversion and a pass interference penalty that wiped away a TTU interception at the goal line. It ended when Trickett flipped pass out left to Sims, who scampered in from four yards out for a 20-13 lead.
The Red Raiders returned the kickoff 52 yards and then had 11- and 24-yard pass plays to get the ball to the WVU 12, but settled for a 26-yard field goal.
The Mountaineers moved quickly again with 22- and 15-yard pass plays before a defensive penalty on third down gave WVU a first down, the fourth first down by penalty on a third down in the game. On second-and-5, Smith ran left and into an alley cleared by receiver Ronald Carswell, who blocked his defender out of the play.