By Ben Everett | Sports Writer
Baylor football trails No. 23 West Virginia 17-6 at halftime at McLane Stadium.
Sophomore receiver Denzel Mims has four catches for 105 yards in the first half, but the Bears have negative five net rushing yards going into the break.
Sophomore quarterback Zach Smith completed back-to-back passes to Mims to start the game and put the Bears at the West Virginia 41-yard line, but Baylor couldn’t muster anymore offense and turned the ball over on downs.
Will Grier completed a 42-yard pass to junior receiver Gary Jennings on third down to put the Mountaineers in scoring position in the first quarter.
The Bears defense came up with the red zone stop, forcing a 27-yard field goal from senior kicker Mike Molina as the Mountaineers took a 3-0 lead with seven minutes remaining in the third quarter.
Baylor made their way to the West Virginia 41-yard line once again, but turned it over on downs for a second straight trip after failing to convert on fourth down.
The Mountaineers extended their lead on a 35-yard touchdown pass from junior quarterback Will Grier to junior receiver David Sills to make it a 10-0 game after one quarter.
The Bears received first-and-goal positioning after Mims was fouled on a pass from Smith at the beginning of the second quarter.
The West Virginia defense forced a 23-yard field goal from Baylor sophomore kicker Conner Martin to make it a 10-3 game with 11 minutes remaining in the half.
Baylor freshman defensive tackle James Lynch came up with a sack of Grier to halt the West Virginia drive and force a punt mid-second quarter.
Smith found freshman running back Trestan Ebner for 24-yard gain and then connected with Mims for a 45-yarder to place the Bears at the 25-yard line, setting up a 42-yard field goal to cut the lead to 10-6 with four minutes left in the first half.
The Mountaineers made one final push up the field with one minute remaining as Grier found Sills once again on a 16-yard touchdown pass to put West Virginia up 17-6.
West Virginia will receive the second half kickoff.