Fresno State Is Triumphant Over UNLV

Fresno State Is Triumphant Over UNLV

Fresno State

Fresno State Is Triumphant Over UNLV


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Fresno State Is Triumphant Over UNLV

Bulldogs get another win over rival Rebels.

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Did everybody see just how gorgeous and fantastic Allegiant Stadium is? The Fresno State Bulldogs sure loved it, topping UNLV 40-27 on Saturday afternoon. Ronnie Rivers scored FOUR (yes,4) touchdowns and again climbed up the record books for the Dogs. Jake Haener played well again and took care of the football, and the Bulldogs jumped to 2-1 with a very favorable schedule going forward. 

Fresno State was extremely balanced on Saturday, rushing for 243 yards and throwing for 244- that’s about as balanced as you can possibly get. Signal-caller Jake Haener went 15 of 23 for 164 yards and a touchdown, adding another 79 yards and a touchdown on the ground, including a 54-yard score to start the action in the first quarter. Ben Wooldridge got more action this week- in a move that DaBoer had hinted at earlier in the week- going 5 for 12 for 80 yards. 

The story of the game? Surprise, surprise, senior running Ronnie Rivers was dynamic once again for the Bulldogs. Rivers finished with 19 carries for 133 yards and three scores and added six catches for 99 yards and a score. Rivers led the Bulldogs in receiving and rushing, and was one yard away from being the first Fresno State player to gain 100 yards in both phases of the game since the early 1980s. Rivers also climbed to second in total touchdowns scored at Fresno State, just one shy of the school record 44 set by Anthony Dangle. 

Ronnie Rivers also became the first Mountain West player to score four times in a game, and Rivers has eight total trips to the end zone in three games this season. Riding the hands of Ronnie Rivers seems like the blueprint for the Dogs, and why not? 

On the other side of the ball, the defense once again got gashed by the running game. UNLV quarterback Max Gilliam gave the Bulldogs headaches of all sorts, rushing 16 times for 139 yards and a score. Fresno native Charles Williams added 89 yards on 27 totes and a score as well. The story of the year has been the Bulldogs lack of effectiveness in stopping the run-primarily against dual-threat quarterbacks- and that trend continued Saturday. The Runnin’ Rebels lived up to their name, finishing with 242 yards on the ground. 

However, the Dogs’ pass defense came to play. The defense added six sacks on the afternoon by six different players, and Chris Gaston picked off Gilliam twice-both in the fourth quarter. UNLV was only able to throw for 160 yards, as the defense did a nice job of pressuring the quarterback. 

The Bulldogs are a drastically different team than we saw in the opener against Hawaii, and Ronnie Rivers is seriously becoming a MWC player of the year candidate. So, wit that being said, what’s ahead for the Bulldogs? 

Fresno State’s remaining schedule is as follows: at Utah State, home against San Jose State and San Diego State, then on the road against Nevada and New Mexico of Las Vegas. Can the Dogs finish strong and make a case for a conference championship game berth? Only time will tell.



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