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Nevada vs BYU final: Cougars drop third straight game

Poor performance in 2nd half allows Wolf Pack to escape with a win

Chris Nicoll-USA TODAY Sports

BYU turned in a very powerful and complete performance through the first half. Christian Stewart threw for over 200 yards and three TDs and Paul Lasike added a rushing touchdown. The BYU defense allowed a long rushing play that set up the Wolf Pack’s only touchdown of the first half. BYU took a 28-13 lead into the break.

The second half brought an entirely new story. The Wolf Pack scored 29 straight points coming out after the half with Cody Fajardo scoring on two rushing touchdowns. One of them a long scramble and another one on a short zone read inside the Cougar’s one-yard line.

Christian Stewart and the Cougar offense finally broke their scoring drought with about 5 minutes remaining in the 4th Quarter. Stewart completed a 75-yard drive with an eight-yard pass to Keanu Nelson. After a defensive stop that forced a Nevada punt, BYU started a drive to tie the game with only about 90 seconds of time remaining. After quickly taking the Cougars 50 yards, Christian Stewart was stripped on a scramble and Nevada quickly recovered to end the ballgame.

Christian Stewart put forward an excellent passing performance with 408 passing yards and four TDs. As a ball-handler, he gave up two crucial fumbles, one of them led to a quick Nevada TD late in the game that put the Wolf Pack up by 14 points.

Mitch Matthews had a career game for the Cougars, pulling in 16 receptions for 182 yards and two TDs. Paul Lasike and Nate Carter combined as a thunder and lightning duo by earning over 130 yards and a TD.

The BYU offense ran 102 total plays for a total of 601 yards, outgaining the Wolf Pack by over 200 yards.

It was another streaky team performance by the Cougars, they seem unable to put together a complete 60 minute performance. When they roll, they really roll, but when they stumble, they stumble hard and give up points in bunches. Losing three turnovers really hurt the Cougars down the stretch and allowed the Wolfpack to negate the yardage difference between these two teams. BYU is now in a free fall after dropping three straight and things do not get easier as the Cougars travel next Friday to Idaho to take on the Boise State Broncos.