Wyoming Ends Season with 42-28 Loss to SDSU [PHOTOS]
The Wyoming Cowboys were shut out in the second half and lost to San Diego State, 42-28, in their last game of the season on Saturday in Laramie. The Aztecs clinched at least a share of the Mountain West championship with the win.
The Cowboys grabbed a 28-21 lead on a 42-yd touchdown pass from Brett Smith to Robert Herron as time ran out in the second quarter. It was the second td pass from Smith to Herron in a sloppy first half that had three fumbles, one overturned fumble and an overturned interception.
Aztec Head Coach Rocky Long said he thought the layoff his team had during the bye week affected his team's effectiveness at the beginning of the game, saying, "We gave up two huge plays that we have not been giving up. We caused a couple of turnovers in the first half, but we gave up too much yardage and two huge plays. I thought our whole team looked sloppy in the first half, and I thought our team looked more like us in the second half."
SDSU took the lead for good on Adam Muema's third of four rushing touchdown in the game with 10:51 left in the third quarter. The Aztecs would score again just before the end of the third quarter on a td pass from Adam Dingwell to Adam Roberts, then again on another Muema td in the fourth quarter, to bring the final score to 42-28.
Muema rushed for a career-high 255 yards against the Pokes, scoring a career-high four touchdowns. SDSU's 400 rushing yards brought their season total to 2,750 yards in 12 games, breaking a school record for the most rushing yards in program history. The Aztecs kept the pressure on Smith, sacking him 6 times. Jake Fely led SDSU with 10 tackles.
UW (4-8, 3-5) generated 382 yards of offense, 122 on the ground and 260 through the air, but most of that came in the first half. Smith threw for 260 yards and 2 touchdowns on 19 completions while rushing for 84 yards and 2 more touchdowns. Smith has now thrown 158 consecutive passes without throwing an interception, placing him fourth in the Mountain West for that streak. Herron had 10 catches in the game for 187 yards and 2 touchdowns, including one from 70 yards out.
Wyoming Head Coach Dave Christensen was asked about the lack of offense in the second half and said, "Breakdown in protection; You're running for your life. That's the bottom line. As I've said before, they make great halftime adjustments. They told their defensive line to beat our offensive line, pass-rushing, and that's what they did."
Four Wyoming defenders finished with double-digit tackles. Saiosi Hala'api'api and Chad Reese each had 12 tackles while Marquestion Huff had 11 and Ghaali Muhammad tallied 10. Reese also had an interception that he returned 57 yards while Hala'api'api forced a fumble and Muhammad recovered a fumble.
Christensen also said, "We didn't tackle very well, so that didn't help matters."