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September 20, 2008

Tech routs UMass in 56-14 laugher

LUBBOCK, Texas - Graham Harrell threw for 322 yards and four touchdowns and Shannon Woods ran for three scores to help No. 11 Texas Tech rout Massachusetts 56-14 on Saturday night.

Texas Tech (4-0) dominated the Minutemen from the outset. The Red Raiders scored on six of seven possessions in the first half and Massachusetts couldn't summon much resistance the rest of the game.

Harrell, who completed passes to 10 different receivers, threw TDs of 17, 12, 2 and 4 yards - and that was in the first half alone. He was 27-of-34 and no interceptions.

Woods, who spent much of last year in coach Mike Leach's doghouse, ran for touchdowns of 2, 38 and 18 yards and finished with 108 yards on 10 carries. It was the most rushing yards for him since he got 109 in a 44-41 win over Minnesota in the 2006 Insight Bowl.

The Red Raiders have a week off before beginning the Big 12 season at Kansas State on Oct. 4.

Massachusetts' troubles continued to begin the second half. On the third play from scrimmage, Red Raider safety Darcel McBath stepped in front a pass from Liam Coen to Julian Talley and returned it 45 yards to put Texas Tech up 49-7.

Tech finished with 538 total yards.

Harrell was replaced by Taylor Potts with about 11 minutes remaining in the game.

Coen was 13-of-20 for 145 yards, well below his season average of 275 yards per game.

Massachusetts (2-2) avoided a second-half shutout when Korrey Davis scored on a 2-yard run with 51 seconds remaining in the game.

Texas Tech (4-0) wasted little time getting out front, scoring quickly on each its first two possessions in the game. Woods got the first of two touchdowns in the first half when he carried the ball in from the 2 and Tramain Swindall caught his first career TD when Harrell hit him at the 5 and he ran in from there to put the Red Raiders up 14-0.

On the Red Raiders third possession, Harrell hit Swindall at the UMass 47 but the redshirt freshman fumbled the ball. Minutemen safety Brian Ellis picked it up and started lumbering toward the end zone along the far sideline. Most of the Texas Tech players thought the pass to Swindall was ruled incomplete and stood and watched as Ellis completed a 53-yard score to make it 14-7. It was Ellis' first career touchdown.

Leach challenged the call but officials upheld their ruling.

UMass appeared to have a chance to level it at 14 when Red Raiders LaRon Moore fumbled the ensuing kickoff and Jonathan Hernandez recovered it at Texas Tech's 21. An official review overturned the call and Texas Tech marched down the field, culminating with Harrell finding Eric Morris over the middle on a slant on a 12-yard TD to go up 21-7 with .

It was the most first-half points for the Red Raiders since late September 2006 when they scored 42 points against Southeast Louisiana in an eventually 62-0 win.

And it could have been worse. Swindall, Detron Lewis and All-American Michael Crabtree were each unable to hold onto passes in the end zone.


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