Scores

Final

Minnesota 44

(2-0, 1-0 away)

8:00 PM ET, September 7, 2013

Aggie Memorial Stadium, LAS CRUCES, NM

1 2 3 4 T
MINN 3 24 3 1444
NMSU 0 7 7 721

Top Performers

Passing: A. McDonald (NMSU) - 186 YDS

Rushing: R. Williams Jr. (MINN) - 16 CAR, 148 YDS, 1 TD

Receiving: J. Bergstrom (NMSU) - 8 REC, 60 YDS

Minnesota pounces on New Mexico St. miscues, 44-21

Associated Press

The Associated Press

LAS CRUCES, N.M. -- Minnesota had a pair of return touchdowns for the second week in a row and Roddrick Williams Jr. rushed for 148 yards and a touchdown on 16 carries to lead a 44-21 victory Saturday night at New Mexico State.

The Gophers made sure the Aggies wound not repeat their 28-21 upset form two seasons ago in the second meeting between the schools.

The Gophers (2-0) opened with a 51-23 victory at home against UNLV last week. NMSU (0-2) took a 56-7 beating at Texas last week.

Despite the final score, the outcome wasn't fully settled in the second-ever meeting between these two until midway through the fourth quarter.

Phillip Nelson was 8 of 15 for 127 through the air and carried 15 times for 122 yards as the Gophers rolled up 342 yards on the ground.

Andrew McDonald was 22 of 31 for 186 to lead the Aggies.

Despite the final score, the outcome wasn't fully settled in the second-ever meeting between these two until midway through the fourth quarter.

Minnesota led 30-14 when NMSU defensive lineman Kevin Laudermill tried to knock down a third-down pass by Nelson, but ended up intercepting the ball.

That put the Aggies in business at the Minnesota 34-yard line, but they failed to capitalize on the opportunity after McDonald was stuffed for no gain on a sneak on a fourth-and-1 play from the Gophers' 11-yard line.

"They quick-huddled us," Minnesota head coach Jerry Kill said, noting his defense was able to take advantage of NMSU not getting a clean play off. "We've done that to people before. But sometimes not everyone gets set, and I think that's what happened to them. Their quarterback bounced out on us earlier in the game on that and we learned from our mistake."

From there, Minnesota put the game away with a 1-yard touchdown from Nelson and a 50-yard fumble return for a score by Aaron Hill.

Minnesota imposed its will on the Aggies, using a bruising ground attack to churn out 342 yards on 43 attempts. The Gophers also had 127 passing yards to finish with 469 total yards.

Asked if he was pleased with the performance of his tailbacks, Kill said, "Not just the tailbacks, but the offensive line looked like we executed better in the running game.

"Our running backs ran physical. Roddrick -- him and David (Cobb) -- they played hard."

NMSU head coach Doug Martin was happy with his team's effort despite the loss.

"Well, we got the right heart," he said. "I really think we've got the right character. These kids have come a long, long way.

"The difference in the game was two fourth-down conversions that we don't make and then the punt that we gave up for the touchdown. If we don't do those things ... we're hurting ourselves. We got some wins coming our way. We just have to keep working."

Minnesota appeared to take command midway through the second quarter on a 14-yard touchdown run by Cobb. That made it 13-0 against an Aggie team whose defense was beginning to tire. NMSU had just one first down in its first five possessions, including four three-and-outs.

However, the NMSU offense responded by getting up off the deck and rattling off a seven play, 76-yard scoring drive that cut the lead to 13-7. The payoff came on a 1-yard run by Brandon Betancourt.

But the Gophers one-upped the Aggies on the following series, putting NMSU right back on its heels with a long drive featuring power running to make it 20-7. Williams did the heavy lifting, carrying six times on the eight-play, 72-yard drive. That included a 7-yard scoring run by Williams, who fumbled on the play but recovered the ball in the end zone with 2:38 left in the first half.

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Team Stat Comparison

 
MINN
NMSU
1st Downs2121
Total Yards469356
Passing127253
Rushing342103
Penalties4-371-15
3rd Down Conversions2-97-16
4th Down Conversions0-01-3
Turnovers11
Possession28:1131:49

Passing Leaders

MinnesotaC/ATTYDSAVGTDINT
Nelson8/151278.501
New Mexico StateC/ATTYDSAVGTDINT
McDonald22/311866.000

Rushing Leaders

MinnesotaCARYDSAVGTDLG
Williams Jr.161489.3154
Nelson151228.1128
New Mexico StateCARYDSAVGTDLG
Morrison19321.729
McDonald10303.0015

Receiving Leaders

MinnesotaRECYDSAVGTDLG
Engel25125.5048
Williams23718.5020
New Mexico StateRECYDSAVGTDLG
Bergstrom8607.5018
Matthews35317.7033

Scoring Summary

FIRST QUARTERMINNNMSU
FG07:29Chris Hawthorne 45 Yd 30
SECOND QUARTERMINNNMSU
FG14:50Chris Hawthorne 22 Yd 60
TD08:43David Cobb 14 Yd Run (Chris Hawthorne Kick) 130
TD06:17Brandon Betancourt 1 Yd Run (Maxwell Johnson Kick) 137
TD02:38Rodrick Williams Jr. 1 Yd Run (Chris Hawthorne Kick) 207
TD01:22Marcus Jones 65 Yd Punt Return (Chris Hawthorne Kick) 277
THIRD QUARTERMINNNMSU
FG11:51Chris Hawthorne 27 Yd 307
TD08:02Germi Morrison 1 Yd Run (Maxwell Johnson Kick) 3014
FOURTH QUARTERMINNNMSU
TD08:33Philip Nelson 1 Yd Run (Chris Hawthorne Kick) 3714
TD05:49Aaron Hill 50 Yd Fumble Return (Chris Hawthorne Kick) 4414
TD00:51Germi Morrison 1 Yd Run (Maxwell Johnson Kick) 4421