No. 20 TCU 55, Portland St. 13

Josh Boyce caught a short pass near the line of scrimmage and

turned into a wide-open lane to the end zone to finally give No. 20

TCU the lead against lower-division FCS team Portland State.

The Horned Frogs poured it on after that.

Boyce’s 66-yard play was the first of three TCU touchdowns in a

span of 1:18 just before halftime. Then, on the first offensive

play of the second half, Waymon Jones managed to stay off the

ground after getting hit at the line and went 65 yards for another

score for the Frogs in their 55-13 victory Saturday.

”We felt it was going to take one big play to get us rolling

and it did,” quarterback Casey Pachall said. ”Once we got the

momentum, they weren’t going to get it because we couldn’t be

stopped at that point. That was a little screen play, basically get

the ball in his hands and let him do what he can do.”

The Horned Frogs (3-1) extended a school record with their 22nd

consecutive win at home since 2007, but were tied 3-3 before

Boyce’s catch-and-run score with 1:55 left in the first half.

Portland State (2-1) took only one snap after that before Drew

Hubel’s pass was deflected by Jason Verrett and intercepted by

linebacker Tank Carder. The Rose Bowl defensive MVP weaved his way

for a 26-yard touchdown. And the Frogs still weren’t finished

before the break.

After the Vikings went three-and-out on their next possession,

Skye Dawson had a 42-yard punt return to the 11. Three plays later,

he caught the first of his two TD passes, a 10-yarder for a 24-3

halftime lead.

”We’re very explosive,” said Boyce, who knew there was the

chance for a big play when he saw Portland State preparing to blitz

and both safeties coming to the line right before the quick

screen.

”We got a little greedy and were going to see if we could get

after the quarterback,” Vikings coach Nigel Burton said. ”A great

team will make you pay and then we got a blitzkrieg there in a

matter of three, four plays. That’s what great teams so, they’ll

jump on you. That’s what we talked about afterwards, if you want to

be a great team, we have to learn to do that to other people.”

James took a handoff to the right to start the second half and

was quickly grabbed by a couple of defenders. They pulled him

toward the ground, but James rolled over on top of a defender and

one of own teammates instead. James then spun away and ran to the

end zone, a touchdown that officials quickly confirmed after

looking at the replay.

”After I handed it off and carried out my fake, I looked back

and I see the little pile, so I think the play is over,” Pachall

said. ”I start kind of looking over to the sideline for the next

play and that stuff and all of a sudden Waymon just starts running

again.”

James, who finished with 136 yards on 10 carries, added an

82-yard kickoff return for a touchdown in the fourth quarter – the

second week in a row the Frogs have returned one for a score.

After Zach Brown’s second field goal for Portland State, James

fielded the ensuing kickoff at the 18. He took off toward the right

sideline, shot through an open gap and picked up a couple of

blockers. He then hurdled a falling defender near midfield right in

front of the TCU bench and was untouched the rest of the way.

Pachall, who was 14-of-20 for 214 yards with three TDs and an

interception, got a fortunate bounce late in the third quarter when

his pass was deflected by linebacker Shane Melbo and should have

probably been intercepted. Instead, the ball ended up in the hands

of Dawson, the former Mountain West Conference champion sprinter.

Dawson caught the ball near midfield and outran the Vikings

secondary to the end zone for a 73-yard TD.

Portland State came in as the FCS’s best rushing team with 348

yards a game but had only 119 yards on 44 carries against TCU.

Vikings senior running back Cory McCaffrey, who had run for 291

yards and seven touchdowns the first two games, didn’t play because

of a swollen knee.

Still, the Vikings opened the game with a 14-play, 71-yard drive

that ended with Brown’s 22-yard field goal and a 3-0 lead. TCU then

scored 41 consecutive points before Brown’s 42-yard field goal with

12:40 left in the game, and Portland State didn’t get a touchdown

until Shaquille Richard scored on a 1-yard run with 1:39 left.

”We came out very strong. We ended up kind of hurting ourselves

just kicking a field goal, but it was good to get out early like

that,” quarterback Connor Kavanaugh said. ”Then the defense came

out and went three and out. It just shows you how strong we are.

Unfortunately, we needed to do that for the full 60 minutes. I

definitely think we came out and shocked them.”