Cougars Rally Past New Mexico, 21-17

Sept. 4, 2004

AP Sports Writer

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) - Josh Swogger passed for three touchdowns andWashington State came up with two interceptions and blocked a punt in thefourth quarter in a 21-17 win over New Mexico on Friday night.

Swogger threw scoring passes of 13 yards to Trandon Harvey and 4 yards toTroy Bienemann in the fourth quarter to erase a 17-7 New Mexico lead in theseason opener for both teams.

The first score finished off a 14-play, 82-yard drive in which Swoggercompleted eight passes, including one on fourth-and-9 to Jason Hall to the NewMexico 11. Two plays later, Swogger found Harvey open with 9:54 left.

The Cougars' defense, which led the nation last year in takeaways (48),forced New Mexico to punt, and cornerback Omowale Dada made the block. TeammateTyron Brackenridge recovered the ball and went out of bounds at the New Mexico4. On the next play, Swogger threw to Bienemann, who made a one-handed catch atthe back of the end zone.

New Mexico's next drive ended near midfield with Husain Abdullah'sinterception of a pass by Kole McKamey.

Washington State's comeback negated a sterling one-two punch by New Mexicohalfback DonTrell Moore and wide receiver Hank Baskett. Moore scored on a61-yard run and rushed for 167 yards on 24 carries. Baskett caught nine passesfor 165 yards.

New Mexico's losing streak against Pac-10 schools reached eight games,including losses the last two years in the Las Vegas Bowl to UCLA and OregonState. The Lobos' last win over a Pac-10 team was in 1979.

Washington State, which lost 16 starters from its 2003 team, which went 10-3and beat Texas in the Holiday Bowl, struggled until its defense took over inthe fourth quarter.

Wes Zunker's 21-yard field goal with 14:57 remaining gave New Mexico a 17-7lead, but it was all Cougars after that. Alex Teem had two interceptions, andthe Cougars' defense, which gave up 222 yards to New Mexico offense in thethird quarter, held the Lobos to 61 yards in the final 15 minutes.

Through the first three quarters, Moore and Baskett gained easy yards.

Baskett had catches of 54 and 45 yards, the first to set up a 1-yardtouchdown run by Adrian Byrd in the third quarter, and the second leading toZunker's field goal.

All of the scoring was in the second half.

Washington State broke the scoreless tie early in the third quarter afterTeems intercepted a McKamey pass at the New Mexico 18. On third-and-8, Swoggerfound Chris Jordan just inside the end zone.

New Mexico came right back to tie it on Byrd's run. The McKamey-to-Baskettpass to the Cougars' 16 and a run by McKamey on the option to the 1 set up Byrdfor his first career rushing TD.

Moore's 61-yard scoring run put the Lobos up 14-7 with 7:04 left in thethird quarter.

New Mexico had 415 total yards to Washington State's 271, but the Cougars'defense forced four turnovers.

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