Senior receiver Reno Mahe recorded a team-high 124 yards on 8 receptions, including this 46-yard catch in the second quarter over UNLV defender Jamaal Brimmer.
PROVO -- UNLV scored 21 unanswered points in the second half to pull away from BYU and record only its second-ever victory over the Cougars, 24-3, on Saturday. The UNLV victory also ended a BYU 10-game home win streak, dating back to Oct. 26, 2000.
The UNLV defense held firm all night, holding BYU to just three points on the night. The Cougars' point production marked the lowest point total at home since being shutout against New Mexico back in 1971, over 31 years ago. The Cougars' point total also marked the fewest points scored since being held to just 3 points against Florida State in the 2000 season-opener in Jacksonville, Fla.
"I'm disappointed with the loss, obviously," BYU head coach Gary Crowton said. "I felt like we practiced well all week, and at times, I thought we looked pretty good.
"I believe we are a young team, but we are learning. At some point we will be pretty good. I think the youthfulness of our team showed up tonight."
In his first start as a Cougar, redshirt freshman quarterback Matt Berry completed 14-of-27 attempts for 186 yards, one interception, and no touchdowns. The Cougar offense managed 408 yards of total offense, compared to UNLV's 319 total yards.
Berry became the first redshirt freshman to start a game since Ty Detmer back in 1988.
"I am going to go with Berry next week," Crowton said. "I think Matt did some really good things and you have got to understand that is the first whole game he has had in four years."
Despite the inexperience, the Cougars had a couple of excellent efforts from their more experienced athletes.
Senior wide receiver Reno Mahe recorded his fifth 100-yard game of his career, racking up 124 yards on 8 receptions, a 15.5-yard average. It is the second time this season Mahe has had more than 100 yards receiving.
Sophomore running back Marcus Whalen ran for over 100 yards, totaling 105 yards on the night on 22 carries. It was the fourth time this season, and in his career, that he has rushed for more than 100 yards.
UNLV senior quarterback Jason Thomas led the Rebel attack with 139 yards passing, connecting on 10-of-13 attempts.
"It's hard to single out any particular player, but we did give the game ball to Jason Thomas," UNLV head coach John Robinson said. "I thought he played a great football game."
UNLV scored first on a 27-yard field goal, capping a 7-play, 67-yard drive to start the game. After being held scoreless in the first quarter for the fifth time this season, the Cougars managed to score on Matt Payne's 24-yard field goal, ending a 7-play, 46 yard drive with 8:10 remaining in the second quarter. The drive was set up after defensive tackle Scott Young recovered a UNLV fumble. The Cougars got in field goal position after Berry hooked up with Mahe for a season-high 46-yard reception.
With 4:13 remaining in the first half, the Cougars attempted a fourth-down conversion, needing just one yard at the UNLV 9 yard line. BYU was stopped for a 1-yard loss, ending any chance for the Cougars to add any points before halftime.
In the second half, UNLV shut out the Cougars and reeled off 21 unanswered points, including 14 points off BYU turnovers.
With the game still within reach, Berry was sacked and fumbled at the UNLV 27 yard line. Jamall Brimmer picked up the offering and rumbled 27 yards for the touchdown.
With time running out, and the Cougars needing to pick up quick yardage, Crowton inserted Bret Engemann into the lineup. After completing 4-of-6 attempts, Engemann's pass was intercepted by Chameio Sutton and returned 38 yards for clinching touchdown.
Robinson said, "It is a team victory and the team is celebrating it. We've got five more to go and nobody knows how we are going to fare the next few weeks."
After the game Crowton was optimistic about the Cougars' future. He said, "We have a chance to go on and win more games. We have to win that fourth game before we can win a fifth, I can tell you that. That's what we are trying to do is get a fourth win and move forward."
The Cougars (3-4, 0-2) will have a short week to prepare for Colorado State (6-2, 2-0). BYU will travel to Fort Collins, Colo., taking on the Rams on Thursday, Oct. 24. The game will be broadcast to a national television audience on ESPN2. Game time is slated for 8 p.m. (MT).
Scoring Streak Continues
Matt Payne's field goal from 24-yards out in the second quarter extended the Cougars' NCAA record to 345 games without being shutout. The last time BYU was shut out was on Sept., 1975 against Arizona State. None of the current members of the BYU team were alive the last time the Cougars were shutout.
Home Win Streak Snapped
UNLV's 24-9 victory over BYU snapped a 10-game home win streak. The Cougars had won 10 straight entering tonight's game, dating back to Oct. 26, 2000 (vs. Wyoming). Tonight's game also marked the first loss for the Cougars since Cougar Stadium was renamed LaVell Edwards Stadium on Nov. 19, 2001.
3 at Home
UNLV held BYU to just 3 points on Saturday, marking the first time the Cougars have been held to just 3 points at home since being shutout on Oct. 1, 1971 (vs. New Mexico).
Twice Is Not So Nice
UNLV's 24-3 victory over BYU marked only its second all-time. The Rebels collected their first win over the Cougars back in 1981 -- UNLV's first-ever win over a ranked opponent. BYU owns an 8-2 record over UNLV. The win also marked head coach John Robinson's first over the Cougars.
You Go First
UNLV kicker junior Dillon Pieffer's 27-yard field goal in the first quarter marked the fifth time this season a BYU opponent has scored before the Cougars. The two games in which BYU has managed to score before their opponent were last week at Air Force (field goal) and against Syracuse on Aug. 29 (touchdown). The Cougars are 1-1 when scoring first.
Nothing in the First
Today's game marks the fifth time this season the Cougars have not scored in the first quarter. BYU has scored in the first quarter in two games this season: Syracuse (touchdown) and Air Force (field goal).
Senior wide receiver Reno Mahe recorded his longest reception of the season on a 46-yard pass from Matt Berry in the second quarter. The longest pass reception on the season for the Cougars came against Syracuse on a 50-yard reception by David Christensen from Bret Engemann. Mahe finished the night with 8 receptions for 124 yards marking his second 100-yard game this season.
Marcus Whalen racked up 105 yards rushing on 22 carries, averaging 4.8 yards per carry. Whalen has produced four 100-yard game this season.
Rumblin', Bumblin' Fumblin'
UNLV defensive back Jamaal Brimmer's 27-yard fumble recovery for a touchdown in the fourth quarter marked the first time the Cougars have allowed a touchdown on a fumble recovery since giving up a 28-yard touchdown against Colorado State last season.
No End Zone In Sight
Scoring just three points in Saturday's 24-3 loss, the Cougars failed to score a touchdown for the first time since being held to just 3 points against Florida State on Aug. 26, 2000.
After opening the season with a 42-point performance against Syracuse, the Cougars' scoring production has continued to decrease. Against Hawaii, the Cougars posted 35 points. However, the following week, the Cougars managed just 28 points in a 31-28 loss at Nevada. One week later, BYU continued to struggle with getting points on the board, posting just 19 against Georgia Tech. The Cougars looked like they were turning things around with a 35-34 win at Utah State. However, Air Force had different ideas, holding the BYU offense to just 9 points. Tonight's scoring total marks the fewest points scored since Gary Crowton took over at BYU in 2001.
Box Score (Final)
Score by Quarters 1 2 3 4 Score
----------------- -- -- -- -- -----
UNLV................ 3 0 6 15 - 24 Record: (3-4,1-1)
Brigham Young....... 0 3 0 0 - 3 Record: (3-4,0-2)
1st 11:24 UNLV - PIEFFER, Dillon 27 yd field goal, 7-67 3:36, UNLV 3 - BYU 0
2nd 08:10 BYU - PAYNE, Matt 24 yd field goal, 7-46 2:24, UNLV 3 - BYU 3
3rd 12:16 UNLV - THOMAS, Jason 6 yd run (FREUND, Michael pass intcpt), 4-46 0:00
UNLV 9 - BYU 3
4th 10:06 UNLV - BRIMMER, Jamaal 27 yd fumble recovery (JOHNSON, Earvin pass),
UNLV 17 - BYU 3
03:01 UNLV - SUTTON, Chameio 38 yd interception return (PIEFFER, Dillon kick)
UNLV 24 - BYU 3
FIRST DOWNS................... 19 24
RUSHES-YARDS (NET)............ 45-164 39-133
PASSING YDS (NET)............. 155 275
Passes Att-Comp-Int........... 16-12-0 43-23-2
TOTAL OFFENSE PLAYS-YARDS..... 61-319 82-408
Fumble Returns-Yards.......... 1-27 0-0
Punt Returns-Yards............ 1-2 1-11
Kickoff Returns-Yards......... 1-22 3-45
Interception Returns-Yards.... 2-38 0-0
Punts (Number-Avg)............ 5-37.2 3-43.7
Fumbles-Lost.................. 3-3 4-2
Penalties-Yards............... 2-13 10-84
Possession Time............... 31:49 28:11
Sacks By: Number-Yards........ 2-8 2-15
RUSHING: UNLV-HARO, Joe 19-48; THOMAS, Jason 9-47; CROOM, Larry 4-40;
DORSEY, Dominiq 6-21; COSTA, Steven 4-18; team 2-minus 2; NANTKES, Kurt
1-minus 8. Brigham Young-WHALEN, Marcus 22-105; BROWN, Curtis 2-13; BERRY,
Matt 6-13; PENDLETON, Lanc 6-11; ENGEMANN, Bret 3-minus 9.
PASSING: UNLV-THOMAS, Jason 10-13-0-139; NANTKES, Kurt 2-3-0-16. Brigham
Young-BERRY, Matt 14-27-1-186; ENGEMANN, Bret 7-11-1-75; PENDLETON, Lanc
RECEIVING: UNLV-JOHNSON, Earvin 8-121; JOHNSON, Michae 3-29; CROOM, Larry
1-5. Brigham Young-MAHE, Reno 8-124; ORD, Andrew 4-50; WHALEN, Marcus 3-27;
NEAD, Spencer 2-21; WILKERSON, Rod 2-13; ANDERSON, Justi 1-13; KUKAHIKO,
Jason 1-12; CHRISTENSEN, Da 1-11; CHRISTENSEN, To 1-4.
INTERCEPTIONS: UNLV-SUTTON, Chameio 1-38; DODD-MASTERS, R 1-0. Brigham
FUMBLES: UNLV-DORSEY, Dominiq 1-1; CROOM, Larry 1-1; THOMAS, Jason 1-1.
Brigham Young-PENDLETON, Lanc 2-0; BERRY, Matt 2-2.
Stadium: Edwards Stadium Attendance: 62543
Kickoff time: 5:06 pm End of Game: 8:07 pm Total elapsed time: 3:01
Officials: Referee: Ken Flaherty; Umpire: Scott Teifer; Linesman: Pete Gautreau;
Line judge: Jeff Hansen; Back judge: Craig Clark; Field judge: Bill Agopian;
Side judge: And. Czstagnola; Scorer: Media Relations;
Temperature: 68 Wind: N 2-3 Weather: Clear
SACKS (UA-A): UNLV-BRIGGS, Ahmad 1-0; BRIMMER, Jamaal 1-0. Brigham
Young-NUA, Shaun 1-0; WALKENHORST, Pa 1-0.
TACKLES (UA-A): UNLV-BROWN, Connie 13-3; TUCKER, Tyrone 5-5; BRIMMER, Jamaal
8-1; SEWARD, Adam 4-4; BRIGGS, Ahmad 4-2; EAGEN, Chris 0-4; JONES, Daniel
2-1; CANTERBERRY, Di 2-1; BELL, Zach 2-1; MACKEY, Sean 2-0; SUTTON, Chameio
1-1; ONIWOR, Joseph 1-1; BRASSINGTON, Ga 0-2; DALTON, Ross 1-0; MOORE, Leon
1-0; WYNN, Jamal 0-1; YOUNG, Terrence 0-1; REED, Phil 0-1; DUNBAR, Pete 0-1.
Brigham Young-WALKENHORST, Pa 3-10; FRANCISCO, Aaro 6-3; BURBIDGE, Jon 1-5;
HEANEY, Brandon 5-0; WRIGHT, Bill 2-3; BARNEY, Chad 4-0; BOCKWOLDT, Colb
4-0; PILI, Ifo 2-2; GUNDERSON, Ryan 0-3; ALLEN, James 2-0; NUA, Shaun 1-1;
MARQUARDT, Dani 1-1; YOUNG, Scott 1-1; NIELSEN, Kip 0-2; POPPINGA, Brady
0-2; WILSON, Kyle 1-0; ATKINSON, Bryan 1-0; TM 1-0; MEIBOS, Jared 0-1;
VINCENT, Hanale 0-1; DENNEY, John 0-1.