Oct. 16, 2004
With the win, New Mexico improves to 3-4 overall and 1-2 in MWC play...the Lobos have won 6 of their past 8 MWC road games and 8 of 11...they also avoided an 0-3 conference start for the first time since 1998, the last year of the WAC...UNM is now 2-3 against UNLV in Las Vegas, winning the past 2.
After averaging 208 yards in its last two games, UNM finished with 376 yards of total offense...the Lobos had 194 in the first half alone...New Mexico grounded out 284 rushing yards and is now 18-3, under Rocky Long, when rushing for more than 225 yards.
Once again, the Lobo defense had a big second half, allowing just 138 yards, including 29 yards rushing, and 3 points after the break...over the past 6 games UNM has yielded an average of 4.3 points (4 FGs, 2 TDs), 49.3 yards rushing and 137.3 total yards after halftime.
The Lobos' overcame a 17-10 halftime deficit to notch their first win in 4 tries this season when trailing after 2 quarters...UNM shut the door on its 24-17 3rd quarter lead, however, winning for the 17th time in its last 18 games when leading after 3 quarters...the only loss in that span was in this year's opener vs. Washington State (14-7 lead)...New Mexico has also won 9 straight and is 15-1 since 2001 when it scores first.
UNM finished the game +6 in the turnover battle, recording 2 interceptions and recovering 4 fumbles...UNM scored 17 points off the Rebel turnovers...the 4 fumbles lost are the most by a Lobo opponent since San Diego State also had 4 in the Lobos' 24-21 road victory in 1999...the 6 turnovers ties for the most turnovers by a UNM opponent, under Rocky Long...the Aztecs gave the ball away 6 times in the Lobos' 30-7 road win last year...the Lobos, meanwhile, did not have any miscues for the first time this season...the last time UNM did not turn the ball over was in a 24-12 win over Air Force last year...New Mexico is 27-9 under Rocky Long when committing fewer turnovers than its opponents and has won 10 of its last 11 when winning the turnover battle.
Redshirt freshman WR Marcus Smith's 65-yard TD run in the 3rd quarter was the longest rush by New Mexico in 12 games (Adrian Byrd at Utah - 78 yards) and the longest touchdown run since 3rd string QB Justin Millea went 73 yards for a score in the third quarter at UNLV in 2002...Smith was a standout tailback at Morse High School in San Diego before moving to receiver midway through the 2003 season.
Junior cornerback Gabriel Fulbright recorded a pair of interceptions, the second multiple INT game of his career...Fulbright stepped in front of Rebel WR Earvin Johnson for his first pick on the first UNLV drive of the game, which set up the Lobos' opening touchdown...he later grabbed a pass intended for Johnson in the endzone...Fulbright had a career-high 3 interceptions in a 30-7 UNM victory at San Diego State last year...four of his 7 career INTs have come in the endzone.
Senior wide receiver Anthony Carter's 34-yard TD reception was the first of his career and just his 3rd catch of the year...Carter's reception was the longest of the season by a Lobo wide receiver, other than Hank Baskett...Carter's 9-yard grab in the first quarter of the season-opener vs. Washington State was the previous long.
Sophomore quarterback Kole McKamey's TD pass to Anthony Carter was the first passing score for the Lobos in 5 games when McKamey hit Hank Baskett with a 7-yard pass against Texas Tech...McKamey had his best game since leading the Lobos over the Red Raiders
Junior tailback DonTrell Moore notched his 3rd 100-yard game of the season and 16th of his career to tie Winslow Oliver for the most in UNM history...Moore finished with 141 yards on 26 carries...his 1st quarter touchdown was his first since scoring from 61 yards out in the 3rd quarter of the Lobos' season-opener vs. Washington State...Moore had 21 TD last year, one off the national lead...he now has 3,191 rushing yards and 34 touchdowns in his career.
Senior safety Josh Bazinet notched his Mountain West Conference-leading 4th fumble recovery this season on a UNLV muffed punt to set up a UNM field goal in the 2nd quarter...Bazinet now has 6 fumble recoveries over the past 2 years.
Senior kicker Wes Zunker had a string of 5 straight field goals snapped when his 3rd quarter kick was blocked...Zunker made a nice play, however, to prevent the Rebels from advancing the loose ball...UNLV was forced to punt on its ensuing possession...Zunker is now 6-9 on the year on field goals...he also set two more kickoffs into the endzone, bring his season touchback totals up to a career-high 8.
UNM junior punter Tyler Gaus punted 8 times for a 41.6-yard average...although he had his second kick blocked, Gaus dropped four balls inside the 20, including 2 inside the 10-yard line.
Earvin Johnson's 47-yard TD reception was the longest catch against the Lobos in 12 games.
New Mexico had a season-high 11 penalties for 101 yards.