MORGANTOWN, W. Va. - Both West Virginia and TCU came into Saturday's first meeting as members of the Big 12 with their seasons riding on this game and played like it.
In the end, the visiting Horned Frogs pulled out a daring 39-38 double overtime victory over the Mountaineers when Josh Boyce made a diving catch of a two-point conversion pass from quarterback Trevone Boykin.
The victory ended a two-game losing streak for TCU and left them at 6-3, 3-3 in the Big 12 while WVU lost for the third straight time, a loss that is sure to drop the one-time No. 5 team in the country out of the rankings.
WVU stands at 5-3, 2-3 in the Big 12.
The Mountaineers seemed to have the game won at the end of regulation when Tavon Austin, who earlier had made a spectacular run after taking a touch pass in the backfield from Geno Smith and rambling 43 yards for a touchdown, gathered in a punt and took it 74-yards for a second TD.
That put WVU in front 31-24 with just 3:19 left, but Boykin scrambled out of the pocket and hit Boyce -- who was alone running down the sideline after having been pushed out of bounds -- 94 yards for a touchdown to tie the game with 1:28 left, forcing overtime.
"It's sad to see them get that long pass, 80 or 90 yards, for a touchdown after the defense had played so well. That was tough to see," WVU Coach Dana Holgorsen said. "Obviously, their quarterback got out of the pocket and their receiver was out of bounds, but he came back in and we lost track of him."
"All of a sudden, (Austin) returns a punt for touchdown and you think the game is over. Then Trevone (Boykin) makes a play with his feet and gets himself open with a scramble, and Josh (Boykin} goes deep and we tie the ballgame to give ourselves a chance," TCU Coach Gary Patterson said.
The two teams failed to score in the first overtime, WVU's chance to win on a 36-yard field goal being blocked by TCU's Jason Verrett.
Then, in the second overtime, the Mountaineers took a touchdown lead on the first play when quarterback Geno Smith hit Stedman Bailey for a score, the receiver's 15th TD of the year.
TCU came back with a call that completely fooled WVU on its first play, Boykin hitting tight end Corey Fuller for the score.
"They tricked us," said WVU defensive coordinator Joe DeForest. "It's like magic."
Even more like magic was after a time out, Patterson opted to go for the win on a two-point conversion and Boyce made the diving catch.
"I happen to be one of those people who believes when you play someone on the road, you have to go take ball games. If you try to just play around, you see what happens, like with the punt return," Patterson said.
But did he make the catch?
"I thought he caught it," Holgorsen said. "From the field, I thought he caught it. They (replay officials) looked at it. So, I guess he did."
The game was not one of WVU QB Smith's best, completing 32 of 54 passes for 260 yards and three touchdowns with an interception.
"Geno (Smith) was probably as bad as he's been since he's been here," Holgorsen said. "But it falls on me (as head coach). What we've done the last three games offensively is totally unacceptable."
NOTES: TCU is 29-3 in its last 32 road games ... WVU is now 80-4 when it has scored 30 or more points this century ... WVU's Bailey, who leads the nation in TD receptions, did not start but did catch that TD pass in overtime ... WVU RB Shawne Alston returned on his birthday after missing almost five full games to score a touchdown, but he had only 16 total yards on seven carries ... WVU CB Brodrick Jenkins did not start but played a lot in the game. He underwent arthroscopic knee surgery two weeks ago ... TCU became bowl eligible with the victory while WVU now has its hands full, needing one more win but playing at Oklahoma State, at home against Oklahoma, then at Iowa State and finishing at home against Kansas ... TB B.J. Catalon and S Derrick Kindred became the fifth and sixth true freshmen to start for TCU this year.