Friday, December 13, 2002
Texas A&M 30, Iowa State 7
AMES, Iowa -- Mark Farris passed for two touchdowns and ran for another, Terence Kitchens kicked three field goals and Texas A&M played dominating defense in beating Iowa State 30-7 Saturday.
Farris, a 25-year-old sophomore, finished 16-of-27 for 248 yards, including touchdown throws of 76 yards to Dwain Goyens and 15 yards to Chris Taylor. But Farris was outshone by a defense that stifled the nation's 12th-best offense.
A&M (5-2 overall, 3-1 Big XII) held Iowa State to 239 yards and kept the Cyclones off the scoreboard until just 2:36 remained. Iowa State (5-2, 2-2), which had been averaging 446.5 yards, had just one play longer than 12 yards through the first three quarters.
The Cyclones averted being shut out for the first time in nine years when Gerrin Scott, playing for the first time this season, hit Lane Danielsen on a 43-yard touchdown pass.
Iowa State had been seeking a sixth victory to become eligible for its first bowl appearance since 1978, and the game drew a near sellout crowd of 48,931 on a sunny, 75-degree day.
But A&M quickly chilled the proceedings by converting a blocked punt into an early touchdown and effectively put the game out of reach with Farris' touchdown pass Goyens, which made it 17-0 with 13:48 left in the first half.
Goyens, a sophomore who had only three receptions going into the game, was all alone when he stopped to catch the ball at midfield and easily outran the pursuit on the longest play of his career.
Kitchens made it 23-0 in the third quarter with a 50-yard field goal, his longest this season, and he had earlier kicks of 27 and 22 yards when A&M stalled after long drives. Farris topped off the afternoon with his touchdown pass to Taylor, a play set up by Mickey Jones' 36-yard punt return.
Texas A&M set the tone defensively by forcing Iowa State to go three-and-out on its first series. With Carl Gomez punting at his own 30, Jay Block burst through the middle of the line to block the kick and the ball rolled all the way to the 5, where Sammy Davis recovered for the Aggies.
Farris scored on quarterback draw two plays later and it was 7-0 with just 2:13 gone in the game.
Iowa State never recovered. The Cyclones did not have a possession in the first half of more than six plays and were unable to establish anything running or passing. Ennis Haywood, the Big 12's leading rusher, carried 14 times for only 75 yards -- 53 below his average.