MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — Whatever game plan Iowa State brought to Mountaineer Field, it likely didn’t involve putting freshman quarterback Grant Rohach in a 24-point hole.

But such was the deficit Rohach helped dig with his early interception. And such was the deficit Rohach helped erase by throwing for three touchdowns in regulation and a fourth in triple-overtime as the Cyclones ruined West Virginia’s senior day 52-44.

That final score marked quite a reversal from Iowa State trailing 31-7 in what portended to become a blowout.

“It was demoralizing to say the least, but I have full faith in my guys to come back,” said Rohach. “And that’s why we didn’t keel over.”

After Rohach threw a pass directly to linebacker Nick Kwiatkoski in the first quarter, WVU took over at the Iowa State 6-yard line and punched it in for a 10-0 lead.

On the Cyclones’ next series running back Aaron Wembley was stripped, leading to West Virginia safety Karl Joseph’s 38-yard scoop-and-score.

“The turnovers early in the game, it brings the whole team down,” Rohach said. “You could obviously see that because we went down by so many. But I’m so glad of the guys that we battled back.”

Iowa State coach Paul Rhoads provided another of his inspirational podium deliveries after his team salvaged a bit of end-of-season momentum.

“Everybody wants to finish with a ‘W’,” said Rhoads, who called his team “a group of young men who never gave up on the season.”

“Same way with the coaching staff. They’ve  been knocked around, been beat up—partially by me—and just kept preparing and working. Cyclone fans that came along with us today and those that have stuck with us all season deserve this moment too.”

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  • Truthteller

    What is going on with United Bank? The branch office in the town center mall is refusing to give out WVU basketball schedules unless you have an savings or checking account with the bank?

    When did that start? Does WVU athletic dept. know about this?

  • Billy

    A sadness has settled over Mountaineer Field. The football team is no longer relevent. The luck experiment has been a complete and total disaster.

  • james hicks

    When you run straight up the middle 25 times against Kanas and get no where then after running 15 times this week and getting one good run someone should say do something different but no we just kept running the middle think the out come would be different. Sims did great but a back must get a start to make a difference. These are my thoughts only. We are not a running team yet and if you keep trying you lose.

  • Ole Sasquatch

    I am so glad we have a good basketball team.
    Ole Sasquatch's wish list for next year:
    1. Hire Rich Rodriguez - he's a winner!
    2. Get rid of IMG network.
    3. Go independent like Notre Dame. Money is no big deal. Our we Mountaineers always free or what? I bet in 3 years will be playing Penn. St., Pitt., Va. Tech., Syracuse etc. Yep, and right here in the same region.
    ... and finally hire the old Gentleman who does The Bookstore advertisement to be the Athletic Director. Huh - you heard me. Daa - da da - da da - daah! Come on sing it with me! Daa ...

    • james hicks

      You need to get real, We will be getting most likely over 30 million from the B12. We are not ND now or ever will be. We would be worse than any team in America if we went independent and if you check most teams had got RR figured out remember Pit.

  • Tim C

    I can't wait until next year when we face sophomore and junior QB 's. We make freshmen look like Heisman Candidates.

  • Big Larry

    Why does WVU keep getting beat by "freshman" quarterbacks?

    • Benthere

      Because there are not worth a damn. You're smarter than that Big Larry!