San Diego is known for its incredible weather year round, but today was anything but that. Rain fell consistently all evening, but BYU came away victorious, 24-21.
The first quarter didn’t go well for either offense. BYU went three and out on their first and third drives of the game, with a Jamaal Williams fumble sandwiched in-between. Luckily for BYU, Wyoming didn’t look any better by not getting a first down until the two minute mark in the first quarter.
BYU caught a break late in the first when Wyoming’s punter mishandled the snap and turned it over inside the 5. Tanner Mangum was able to run it in two plays later to put the Cougars on the board 7-0.
Wyoming punter has no idea where the ball went. pic.twitter.com/LlbhraiFM2— SB Nation GIF (@SBNationGIF) December 22, 2016
Wyoming continued to struggle on offense even after a bad interception by Mangum that gave them great field position. It looked like Wyoming was about to get their first points of the game but the field goal attempt was slow in developing and ended up with the holder picking it up and throwing down field before Harvey Langi knocked down the pass for the turnover.
Jamaal Williams was able to eclipse the 100 yard mark with five minutes left in the first half and Rhett Almond made a 37-yard field goal to extend BYU’s lead to 10-0. That was the score as both teams headed into the locker-room, Wyoming amassing just 119 yards in the half.
Wyoming did get things going on their first drive of the second half and were able to convert two 4th and short plays. A few plays later HIll was able to run it in to finally get Wyoming on the board 10-7.
The BYU passing game opened up as well. Tanner Mangum completed a nice pass to Jonah Trinnaman and followed it up with a huge play to Nick Kurtz down to the 5. Tanner then threw a touchdown pass to Tanner Balderee... kind of. The pass was basically a duck but after being batted around it fell into Balderee’s hands to put BYU up 17-7.
Perhaps we are all playing checkers and Tanner and Ty are playing chess and that’s how they drew it up.
On the next possession, Micah Hanneman got tossed for targeting but Dayan Lake made up for it by getting an interception on the next play.
Jamaal Williams took advantage and scampered with a huge touchdown run to put BYU up 24-7. Jonah Trinnaman had a fantastic block that opened it up.
Wyoming answered and made it 24-14 early in the 4th quarter.
Shortly thereafter, Jamaal went over the 200 yard mark on the night but BYU was forced to punt and gave the ball back to Wyoming up by 10 with 5 minutes left.
Josh Allen hit Tanner Gentry with 2:11 left to get Wyoming within one score at 24-21.
BYU went three and out and punted back to Wyoming with just over a minute to play. Wyoming looked to be in business but Kai Nacua came up big with an interception to seal the deal for BYU. Kai has been a ball hawk his entire career but his last interception at BYU may be the best one.
Tanner Mangum showed signs of his old self but overall it was a rather modest performance. Jamaal Williams was the player of the game running for 210 yards and a touchdown.
There will be plenty of time to analyze how the season was overall but it is certainly a confidence boost for the new coaching staff and players going into next year to get a bowl win.