LOGAN, UTAH - The New Mexico State Aggies (2-7, 1-4) fell to the Utah State Aggies (3-6, 1-4) Saturday afternoon in Logan, Utah. NM State out-gained Utah State in total offense 346 to 296, but were outscored 17-5 in the second half after holding a 17-10 lead at halftime.
Junior Matt Christian led the Aggies in passing with 191 yards and a touchdown, while also recording 41 yards and a touchdown on the ground. Sophomore running back Kenny Turner led the Aggies rushing and receiving, tallying 68 yards on 17 carries and 64 yards receiving on seven catches. Defensively for NM State, Alphonso Powell, Davon House and B.J. Adolpho all recorded seven tackles each.
Both teams were forced to punt on their first two possessions of the second half. Utah State took the ball 66 yards down the field, scoring on a 3-yard touchdown run by Diondre Borel to tie the game at 17 all with 2:50 left in the third quarter. Penalties kept the Utah State drive alive, allowing them to tie the game.
The Aggies were forced to punt giving Utah State good field position towards the end of the third quarter but the NM State defense held Utah State with 13:40 remaining in the game. The Aggies drove down inside Utah State's side of the field but was stuffed. Stampler came on to kick a career-long 48-yard field goal to give NM State a 20-17 lead with 9:29 to go in the game.
On the ensuing kickoff Utah State returned the ball to the NM State 27-yard line as the Aggies were flagged for a personal foul giving Utah State field position at the 12-yard line. Utah State then scored on the next play on a 12-yard run, giving Utah State a 24-20 lead with 9:07 to go in the game.
The NM State offense went three-and-out giving the ball back to Utah State with 7:33 left in the game. Utah State then ate up over four minutes on the clock, settling for a field goal, making it 27-20 with 2:44 remaining in the game. NM State took the ball over at its own 12-yard line. The Aggies drove the ball down to the Utah State 27-yard line with just under a minutes left in the game but could not convert on fourth-and-three, turning the ball over on downs with 52 seconds left.
Utah State would kneel on the ball three times and on fourth down with eight seconds to go, Utah State took a safety in the endzone running the clock out. Despite the safety, Utah State won the game 27-22.
After a 37-yard kickoff return by Rogers, the Aggies drove 58 yards on 10 plays to take an early 7-0 capped off by a Christian 9-yard touchdown run with 9:33 left in the first quarter. The Aggies would take the ball over again after two punts by Utah State and marched down the field on five plays covering 86 yards, as Christian hit Todd Lee on a 32-yard touchdown pass. NM State took a 14-0 lead with 52 seconds left in the first quarter.
An 84-yard kickoff return by Utah State gave the Aggies the ball inside NM State's 10-yard line. Two plays later Utah State scored on a 2-yard run by Derrvin Speight, to pull within seven at 14-7, ending the first quarter.
Safety Alphonso Powell would intercept a Utah State pass to give the Aggies the ball back at the Utah State 31-yard line. The Aggies' offense couldn't get anything going but Tyler Stampler came in and hit a 46-yard field goal with 10 minutes left in the half to take a 17-7 lead.
Utah State then took the ball down into NM State territory but the Aggie defense held forcing Utah State to settle for a 44-yard field goal to bring to score to 17-10 in favor of NM State with 7:41 to go in the half. NM State and Utah State would be forced to punt on their next possessions. The Aggies would get the ball back right before the half but stalled, running the clock out and went into the locker room up 17-10.
In the first half, NM State tallied 220 yards of total offense to Utah State's 155 yards. Christian led the Aggies with 82 yards passing on 8-of-15 with a touchdown, while also rushing for a score. Turner rushed for 56 yards on 11 carries and caught four passes for 31 yards. Lee caught two passes for 37 yards and a touchdown. House led the Aggies with four tackles for the defense and Powell grabbed an interception.
The Aggies will host Louisiana Tech, Saturday, Nov. 13 at 4:00 p.m. at Aggie Memorial Stadium. The game will be televised on ESPN Regional.