2:10 PM ET, October 22, 2005
Bill Snyder Family Stadium, Manhattan, KS
MANHATTAN, Kan. (AP) -- On a day filled with mistakes, Texas A&M finally got it right.
Jorvorskie Lane's second touchdown run, a 2-yarder with just over four minutes to go, gave the Aggies enough of a cushion to hold off Kansas State 30-28 on Saturday for their first road victory of the season.
"It might have looked sloppy at times," wide receiver Chad Schroeder said, "but the defense came through and we made enough plays to score a couple more points than them."
Reggie McNeal was at the center of many of those big plays. He ran for 119 yards and one touchdown, threw for another score and had runs of 32 and 19 yards on the possession that ended with Lane's score for a 30-21 lead.
That drive came after Allan Evridge's 42-yard touchdown pass to Jermaine Moreira with just over eight minutes left got Kansas State within 23-21.
"We knew going into that drive that we had to keep making plays and go down and score," said McNeal, who ran 26 yards for a touchdown on A&M's first official snap and put the Aggies up 23-8 with a 5-yard pass to Schroeder in the third quarter. "They had got on a little roll and had momentum on their side. We had to come out and make a play."
Lane, a freshman making his first start, had 98 yards rushing in coach Dennis Franchione's first win in his native Kansas since he left Pittsburg State in 1989.
Kansas State (4-3, 1-3 Big 12) lost its fifth straight against Texas A&M (5-2, 2-1). The Wildcats are 0-6 against Big 12 South teams since their 35-7 shocker over then-No. 1 Oklahoma in the 2003 conference title game.
Evridge threw three touchdown passes for the Wildcats, including a 4-yarder to Jordy Nelson with 1:27 left that cut A&M's lead to 30-28. But Schroeder recovered the ensuing onside kick at Kansas State's 47-yard line, sealing the Aggies' victory.
The Wildcats tried for a 2-point conversion after Moreira's touchdown catch, but Johnny Jolly stuffed Evridge behind the line.
The failed conversion was symptomatic of the Wildcats' ongoing running woes. They had only 27 yards rushing Saturday, the third time this season they've been held under 50 yards, and failed to convert on fourth-and-2 from A&M's 5 in the third quarter.
"I'm not so sure that we couldn't have run the ball better today," Kansas State coach Bill Snyder said. "I really believe we could, but the game got away from us quick enough and all of a sudden we were having some opportunities in the passing game."
Evridge finished with 357 yards passing, 5 short of Kansas State's freshman record, but was plagued by a series of dropped balls in the open field -- four by receiver Yamon Figurs.
"It was just a bad day," said Figurs, who caught a 52-yard TD pass from Evridge in the second quarter for Kansas State's first touchdown. "I've never had a game like that."
Kansas State's offensive struggles offset a long list of mistakes by Texas A&M.
The Aggies passed up a first-quarter field goal that would have given them a 17-0 lead, instead running a fake that went nowhere. Then, when they did try to kick, Todd Pegram's 43-yard try in the third quarter fell well short.
"I was mad at myself for not taking the three points with the wind," Franchione said, "but if I'm going to be mad at myself, at least I'm going to be aggressive."
The Aggies blocked a punt near Kansas State's goal line in the second quarter but got only a safety because several A&M players tried and failed to scoop up the ball rather than falling on it.
They tried to punt out of their own end zone in the fourth quarter, rather than take a safety, and Nelson recovered Adam Hamilton's block for a touchdown that got the Wildcats within 23-15.
Those miscues, and others, turned a seeming rout into a close game.
After Kansas State went three-and-out on its first possession, an interference penalty and a personal foul call gave Texas A&M a short field for McNeal's first score. McNeal took off left, cut upfield and raced untouched to the end zone.
"It was two defensive backs, two receivers and me," he said. "I love those odds."
Lane's 2-yard run later in the first quarter, after Kansas State's Jeff Snodgrass was wide left on a 38-yard field goal attempt, made it 14-0.
After the safety made it 16-0, Kansas State halved that lead later in the second quarter on Evridge's TD throw to Figurs and 2-point pass to Parrish Fisher.
Running back Courtney Lewis, who missed the two previous games for Texas A&M with an undisclosed injury, returned Saturday. Lewis, the Aggies' leading rusher in 2003 and 2004, had four carries for 19 yards and caught two passes for 15 yards.