Boise Broncos buck Miners in 54-13 loss

Danny Lopez, Staff Reporter

The Miners (2-0) were in a tight contest in the beginning with the University of Boise State Friday night, Sept. 10, at Albertson’s stadium. In the first half, the Miners were able to move the ball on the Broncos defense but had problems scoring inside the end zone. The Broncos were able to find their footing and put-up points in a hurry to lead in the first half 41-13. In the second half, the Broncos dominated the field by forcing six turnovers that converted into touchdowns, resulting in a 54-13 UTEP loss. 

On their first offensive series, the Miners were able to move the ball on the Broncos defense. Quarterback Gavin Hardison had good command throwing the ball, alongside junior running back Ronald Awatt slicing through the Broncos defense to move the ball 59 yards and deep into the Broncos territory. The Miners could not score inside the end zone and settled for a field goal to take a 3-0. 

On defense for UTEP, the Broncos were able to move the ball on the Miners going all the way into the Miners territory after a huge catch by their senior wide receiver Khalil Shakir. However, the Miners were able to stifle them near the end zone to force them into a field goal to tie the game 3-3. 

On the Miners’ next offensive possession, junior offensive lineman Zuri Henry had a hand to the face call which pushed the Miners near the back of the end zone. UTEP could barely move the ball following the penalty and had to punt.  

However, the Broncos were able to return a punt for a touchdown that put the Broncos up 10-3. 

On the Miners second drive, Gavin Hardison threw the ball to sophomore wide receiver Tyrin Smith, who was able to draw a pass interference call to move the ball for the Miners. UTEP again dashed their chances with penalties to bring second and third and long. Hardison was able to convert a third and long. After that big play, Awatt tore it open for 11 yards to give the Miners another big first down. Moments later, sophomore receiver Jacob Cowing would come up big on a third and six to get a first down deep inside the Broncos territory. 

The Miners were not able to punch it in and had to settle for the field goal to make the game 10-6. 

Moments later, The Broncos were able to move the ball near the end zone after three huge plays. Boise was able to punch it in just outside the end zone for a touchdown to make the game 17-6. 

Hardison was sacked and fumbled the ball on the Miners’ third drive, giving it to the Broncos inside the three-yard line. The Broncos would score from the three-yard line after the big fumble from Hardison making the game 24-6. 

 After a punt from the Miners, redshirt junior Stefan Cobbs for Boise grabbed a 31-yard touchdown from a pass from Bachmeier, making the score 31-6. 

At the 6:00 mark, the Miners struck like lightning and scored on a Hardison to Cowing touchdown to bring the score to 31-13. 

The Miners were able to stop the Broncos on offense after another drive began going near the end of the half, holding the Broncos to a field goal to make the score 34-13. 

Right before the end of the half, the Miners drove the ball all the way down into the end zone but turned the ball over after another Hardison interception. The Broncos took advantage and scored on that possession to increase their lead 41-13 at the end of the first half. 

In the beginning of the second half, the Miners almost gave up another touchdown on special teams but were able to stop a huge return from happening. 

The Broncos on offense, however, scored quickly on their first possession on a nicely thrown ball from Bachmeier to the open tight end Hooper to make the score 48-13. 

On their opening second half drive, UTEP turned the ball over after a pass from Hardison to wide receiver redshirt senior Walter Dawn Jr. was fumbled, stripped out by a Bosie defender. 

Deeper into the half, Hardison threw another interception allowing Boise to almost score again, but redshirt junior defensive tackle Keenan Stewart stopped Bachmeier short of the goal line on fourth and goal. 

A few possessions later, the Miners yanked Hardison and most of the starters from the game and put in sophomore quarterback Calvin Brownholtz for the remaining time. 

UTEP would go onto to lose the game 54-13. 

Hardison finished the game completing 15-for-24 passes for 223 yards, two touchdowns and four interceptions. 

Cowing led the receiving group with 112 yards on six receptions and one touchdown. 

The Miners fall to 2-1 and host the University of New Mexico at 7 p.m. Sept. 25 at Sun Bowl Stadium. Students can get free tickets to football games with a Miner Gold Card. Visit studenttickets.utep.edu for more information.  

Daniel Lopez may be reached at [email protected]