October 18, 2009
Night Moves: OSU beats Mizzou
STILLWATER - It was a late night, but a good night, for Oklahoma State.
In a game that was topsy-turvy, up-and-down and a whip-around roller coaster of an affair, the No. 16 Cowboys figured out a way to break away from Missouri, winning 33-17 in front of a Boone Pickens Stadium crowd of 55,752.
To go into full-on cliché mode, it was a tale of two halves for the Cowboys. In the first, OSU and Mizzou leapfrogged each other on the scoreboard before the Pokes took a 24-17 lead into the locker room after an 8-yard pass from Zac Robinson to Hubert Anyiam.
At that point, it seemed like a shootout might be developing, but that was far from the case. In the second half, OSU (5-1 overall, 2-0 Big 12) clamped down on defense and took the Tigers (4-2, 0-2) off the scoreboard - completely. Bill Young's unit pitched a shutout in the second half, while Dan Bailey kept tacking on field goals - including a career-long 51-yarder - to slowly choke out the Tigers.
"It was a tremendous effort," head coach Mike Gundy said. "It was a very interesting game in that we couldn't really slow them down in the first half and offensively we moved the ball effectively. Then you get to the second half and we give up 75 or 80 yards total in the second half and offensively we kind of sputtered around."
To get an idea just how much of a difference it was between halves, check this: At the break, Mizzou had amassed 313 yards of total offense - 259 of that through the air. For the game, the Tigers had 393 total yards. Through the wonders of simple math, that means the Pokes only allowed 80 yards in the last 30 minutes. The third quarter was especially impressive, as OSU allowed only 17 yards. That obviously frustrated the Tigers, who went for it five times on fourth down - only converting twice. On third down, Mizzou was 3-of-15.
"We had a number of fourth downs and I think we stopped them three times in the fourth quarter," Gundy said. "We got really key plays from our defense on short third downs. I told the team it's been a long time in watching and being involved in Oklahoma State football as a coach and a player that we had that many crucial stops in big situations. We were really proud of our defense."
The offense can't be overlooked, either. Robinson turned in a fine performance, passing for 227 yards and a score and rushing for 42 yards. The big night on O was turned in by Anyiam, who caught 10 passes for 119 yards and one touchdown.
But the defense put up some points as well, as Lucien Antoine nabbed an interception and took it back 26 yards for the score with 8:21 left in the second quarter.
Now the Cowboys move on to a road contest at Baylor. That game is slated for an 11:30 a.m. start.
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