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Smith Finds Bailey, Mountaineers Cut Deficit To 17-7 At The Half

The Mountaineers finally saw a glimmer of hope putting together a good drive featuring balanced play calling that resulted in a 5 yard touchdown pass from Geno Smith to his high school teammate Stedman Bailey. Bailey and Smith, who came to WVU as a package deal, have found a great rhythm over the last two weeks, hooking up for three touchdowns. Noel Devine is obviously hurt, and unlikely to make an impact the rest of the game. Ryan Clarke provided some quality between-the-tackles running on the Mountaineers scoring drive, getting them down inside the 10. Geno Smith had to pick up a 4th down conversion on the old Rich Rod zone read play.

The Mountaineers enter halftime with some positive momentum. Hopefully their miscues are behind them and they can come out firing in the second half. Offense is obviously a work in progress and Smith contends with the most intimidating defense and away crowd that he’s seen so far as a starter. The defense looks great, and seems to be giving the Tigers fits. Chris Nield picked up a key sack, and Julian Miller, JT Thomas and Bruce Irvin have spent time in the LSU backfield pressuring quarterback Jordan Jefferson.

Though the Mountaineers have delivered some ugly moments so far, from injuries to turnovers to blow coverage on punt returns, there are some bright spots. If the D can pick up a quick stop to open the second half, things could be looking good for the guys in the old gold and blue.

Photographs by dizfunk used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.