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Texas Tech taking it to another level this time

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Texas Tech taking it to another level this time

FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) Seth Doege and Texas Tech backed up their big victory - even though it took a while.

Now, the 15th-ranked Red Raiders have to get ready for another big challenge.

``On the sideline you could tell no one had any thought of losing the game,'' Doege said after throwing a career-high seven touchdowns in Tech's 56-53 triple-overtime victory at TCU on Saturday. ``We were in it the whole time. All week we had been preaching to take it to the next level.''

A week after their impressive five-touchdown victory over then-No. 5 West Virginia, Texas Tech (6-1, 3-1 Big 12) overcame an early 10-point deficit and Doege threw TD passes in each overtime period.

The Red Raiders let a 10-point lead late in regulation get away.

``That is one of the most emotionally taxing games I've been in,'' safety Cody Davis said. ``How we kept fighting and pulling through.''

Tech plays next Saturday at fourth-ranked and Big 12-leading Kansas State (7-0, 4-0), which won 55-14 at West Virginia on Saturday night.

After an upset victory at third-ranked Oklahoma midway through last season, the Red Raiders finished with five losses in a row for their first losing season since 1992. That ended a Big 12-record streak of 18 consecutive years of bowl eligibility.

Before going to TCU, Doege recalled the letdown of last season and the Red Raiders ``being on such a high and going to such a low.''

They might have been exhausted, but they left TCU already bowl eligible.

``This was a team win because we didn't play that great and were able to find some way to win the game,'' coach Tommy Tuberville said.

Texas Tech moved up three spots in the new AP Top 25 poll released Sunday.

League newcomer TCU (5-2, 2-2), which lost its first Big 12 home game against Iowa State two weeks ago, has lost consecutive home games in the same season for the first time since their last two home games of the 1998 season.

``Welcome to the Big 12,'' said Frogs coach Gary Patterson, then the defensive coordinator and now in his 12th season as head coach. ``I do believe this. I believe we proved we can play in it. Are we unhappy we lost? Yes, but it was a heck of a game.''

It was the first triple-overtime game in TCU history, and the highest-scoring home game ever for the Frogs, who next play at Oklahoma State. The only time they were in a game with more points scored was a 62-55 win at Houston in 2003.

The last time the Horned Frogs had been in a game with so many points was their 70-35 loss at Texas Tech in 2004. That 15-touchdown spectacular came two years before only field goals were scored in TCU's 12-3 home win that was the only other game in the series since the last Southwest Conference season in 1995.

After redshirt freshman Trevone Boykin threw a 60-yard TD to LaDarius Brown on third-and-20 with 2:25 left in regulation and Tech had a three-and-out, the Frogs tied the game at 36-all with 18 seconds left on freshman Jaden Oberkrom's 42-yard field goal, the fifth of his Big 12-record six made kicks.

Texas Tech responded after TCU scored first in overtime, then the Red Raiders opened the second overtime with a little trickery out of the wildcat formation. Running back Eric Stephens took the snap and handed off to Darrin Moore, who flipped it back to Doege, the quarterback who lined up wide and then threw a 25-yard TD to Jakeem Grant.

``Resiliency. This team, we fought,'' said Alex Torres, who had an 8-yard TD catch to end the game. ``The way they battled back was impressive. To get a touchdown and field goal to tie the game, they definitely went into overtime with the momentum. ... Offensively, defensively, we had to bail each other out. That game tells a lot about our team.''

For the Red Raiders, who have had plenty of big-scoring days in the past, it was the most combined points ever in a game they played - surpassing their 66-42 loss to Baylor last November. It was the first time they were in a game when both teams scored 50 points.

``We made a lot of mistakes, but we've been working real hard for a game like this, to win a game when you don't play your best,'' Tuberville said. ``I think that's what this sport is all about, you've got to find a way to win on the road.''

And they'll be trying to do that again next weekend.

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NBA offseason grades: With Kawhi Leonard, Raptors shined most in Atlantic Division

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USA TODAY Sports

NBA offseason grades: With Kawhi Leonard, Raptors shined most in Atlantic Division

Here is a look at how the 2018 NBA offseason went for teams in the Atlantic Division...

Toronto Raptors, B+

2017-18 finish: 59-23, 2nd round of playoffs
In: F Kawhi Leonard, G Danny Green, C Greg Monroe
Out: G DeMar DeRozan, C Jakub Poeltl, C Lucas Nogueira

The Raptors had one of the more consequential offseasons of any NBA team this year. First, they fired Dwane Casey, the 2017-18 NBA Coach of the Year, following a season in which they won 59 games. Then, they pulled off the biggest trade of the summer, a deal that featured two perennial All-NBA players. They let go of DeRozan and brought in Leonard in return. If they hadn't parted with DeRozan and Casey, they may have gotten an A. But it's hard to tell how much better they will be following the deal and Leonard does bring with him some concerns based on his quadriceps injury and the fact he has only one year left on his contract. The Raptors do, however, also get points for re-signing point guard Fred VanVleet.

Boston Celtics, C

2017-18 finish: 55-27, conference finals
In: C Robert Williams, G Brad Wanamaker
Out: C Greg Monroe

One year ago, the Celtics flipped nearly their entire roster and brought in Kyrie Irving and Gordon Hayward. This year, they mostly stood pat and didn't add much of anything in free agency or trades. Their biggest acquisition was Williams, who they took 27th overall in the first round of the draft. The Celtics will hope they improve from within. They re-signed Marcus Smart and Aron Baynes, and should get Irving and Hayward back from injuries. They should have plenty of talent to compete for an NBA Finals berth, but as far as this offseason goes, they didn't do much.

Philadelphia 76ers, D+

2017-18 finish: 52-30, 2nd round of playoffs
In: F Wilson Chandler, C Mike Muscala, G Zhaire Smith, G Landry Shamet
Out: G Marco Belinelli, F Ersan Ilyasova

Where do we begin? This summer was about as dramatic and bad as it could get for the Sixers. First, they had to fire their general manager because of a burner Twitter account scandal. Then, they struck out miserably in free agency with LeBron James and Paul George, and in trade talks for Leonard. After that, Smith - their first round pick - hurt his foot. And along the way, Ben Simmons has been dating a Kardashian, flirting with the curse that has claimed many pro athletes before him. Philly did re-sign J.J. Redick and Johnson, and the Chandler trade was nice, but all in all it was an offseason that fell way short of the Sixers' expectations. That said, they can still get way better next season based solely on their young players taking another step.

New York Knicks, B

2017-18 finish: 29-53, missed playoffs
In: F Mario Hezonja, F Kevin Knox, F Noah Vonleh, C Mitchell Robinson
Out: F Michael Beasley, G Jarrett Jack, F Kyle O'Quinn

It's been a while since the Knicks had an offseason to write home about and this one is no exception. There was nothing they did that would flirt with an A-grade. However, the early returns on their draft are excellent. Knox and Robinson were both standouts in the Summer League and offer fans a little bit more hope about the team's future. As long as Kristaps Porzingis can return this season safe and sound from his ACL tear, the Knicks could take a step forward in 2018-19.

Brooklyn Nets, C+

2017-18 finish: 28-54, missed playoffs
In: F Ed Davis, F Kenneth Faried, F Jared Dudley
Out: F Dante Cunningham, G Nik Stauskas, C Jahlil Okafor

The best news about the Nets' offseason is that their trade with the Celtics, the one that stripped them of years of first round picks, is finally over. Next year, the Nets will have a first round pick. This summer, they once again didn't add any major pieces in the draft, but seemed to make some smart moves in free agency. The Davis deal is solid and Faried may benefit from a change of scenery. More baby steps for Brooklyn.

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Dmitry Orlov dazzles his hometown of Novokuznetsk with the Stanley Cup

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USA Today Sports

Dmitry Orlov dazzles his hometown of Novokuznetsk with the Stanley Cup

Friday featured Dmitry Orlov and his jam-packed schedule with the coveted Stanley Cup.

The 27-year-old native of Russia decided to take the Cup to Novokuznetsk (located in the southwest region of Siberia) for a meet and greet with fans by the Ferris wheel at Gagarin City Park.

It should be mentioned that Orlov's day with the trophy was nearly derailed after a travel glitch that sent the Cup to Novosibirsk instead of his hometown. 

Thanks to the ultimate assist from a helicopter, the Cup arrived in style and set up one memorable entrance for the defenseman. 

Orlov released this hype video which highlights his entire day on Instagram: 

Дорогие друзья! Огромное спасибо, что разделили с нами наш праздник! Для нас это значимое и большое событие! Ещё раз приносим искренние извинения за задержку с кубком! И спасибо за понимание, мы старались сделать все максимально быстро! Спасибо за тёплый приём! Нашим родным, друзьям, тренерам, отдельная благодарность! Вы сделали наш праздник, наш день! Мы никогда не забудем этот праздник! P.S. Лена @govor_elena , тебе и твоим родным, отдельная благодарность, если бы не ваша помощь, то не известно когда бы кубок был в Новокузнецке!

A post shared by Dmitry Orlov (@orlov_09) on

Talk about a banner weekend for the Washington Capitals. The Ovechkins welcomed their new son, Sergei Aleksandrovich, into the world and Orlov pulled off yet another spectacular day with the Cup.

 

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