Wyo. beats Fresno St. in second OT, 35-28

Wisconsin-Whitewater wins Division III championship

December 20, 2009|By From Sun news services

Freshman Austyn Carta-Samuels threw three touchdown passes, the last a 13-yarder to David Leonard in the second overtime Saturday, and Wyoming beat Fresno State, 35-28, in the New Mexico Bowl in Albuquerque.

The first of 34 bowls was a high-scoring matchup that was decided by defense.

Wyoming (7-6) stopped the nation's leading rusher, Fresno State's Ryan Mathews, on three rushing attempts from the 1 in the first overtime. The Bulldogs (8-5) tried a quarterback sneak on third down, and Mathews came up short again on fourth down.

The Cowboys scored on the first possession in double overtime, then held Fresno State on downs.

Wyoming fans spilled out of the stands to celebrate as the school band played "Cowboy Joe." This was Wyoming's first bowl appearance since 2005, and it capped a winning season for first-year coach Dave Christensen.

Mathews, who led the nation in rushing average at 151.3 yards per game, finished with 144 yards rushing on 31 attempts with two touchdowns. But he had a big fumble midway through the fourth quarter, setting up Carta-Samuels to lead a 19-play drive that tied it.

Wyoming's Ian Watts kicked a 37-yard field goal with 20 seconds left in regulation. But after the Cowboys stopped Mathews in the first OT, Watts was wide left on a 40-yard field-goal try that would have won it.

Division III title game: Levell Coppage had 111 rushing yards and three touchdowns and Wisconsin-Whitewater scored 10 points in the final 1:17 to beat defending champion Mount Union, 38-28, in the championship game in Salem, Va.

The Purple Raiders (14-1) had won 29 straight games.

Jeff Donovan was 26 of 40 for 323 yards and two touchdown passes for the Warhawks (15-0), who won their second national championship in the past three years. This is the fifth straight year that the two teams have met in the national championship game.

NAIA title game: Ryan Lomiller ran for 115 yards and a touchdown, and Braden Wieking kicked three field goals, including a tiebreaking 42-yarder in the fourth quarter, to lead Sioux Falls (15-0) to a 25-22 win over Lindenwood (13-1) on Saturday in Rome, Ga.

Friday night
Matt Szczur rushed for 159 yards and two touchdowns to help Villanova beat Montana, 23-21, in the Football Championship Subdivision final Friday night in Chattanooga, Tenn.

Szczur also had four receptions for 68 yards, returned two kickoffs for 43 yards and recorded two special teams tackles.

"What can I say about Matt Szczur? He's the best player we've had at Villanova since Brian Westbrook," Wildcats coach Andy Talley said.

Off the field
Southern California is investigating starting tailback Joe McKnight's alleged use of an SUV registered to a businessman, according to a newspaper report.

McKnight has been seen driving a 2006 Land Rover that state records indicate is registered to 47-year-old Scott Schenter, the Los Angeles Times reported in an article posted on its Web site Friday night. McKnight told the paper that he has never driven the SUV and that it belongs to his girlfriend's boss.

"I know I can't drive cars I'm not supposed to," he said.

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