Nevada enjoys biggest ever win

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By Tim Dahlberg
Sunday, November 28, 2010

RENO, NEV. -

For two years, Boise State won every time it took the field. The Broncos had to, if they wanted to be considered a serious team that could one day possibly compete for the BCS title.

When the inevitable loss came, it hurt in more ways than the Broncos could count.

No national title game. No BCS bowl. No grudging respect from the big boys in the big conferences.

"I'm at a loss for words," said quarterback Kellen Moore, who suffered only his second loss in 38 games in college. "Hopefully we'll learn something from this."

Nevada handed the Broncos that second loss, thanks to a huge second half on the ground and two missed kicks by a normally reliable place kicker.

Nevada roared back from a 17-point halftime deficit Friday night, beating No. 3 Boise State 34-31 in overtime in a wild game for the school's biggest win.

A game that the Broncos seemingly had in hand slipped away when normally efficient kicker Kyle Brotzman missed a 26-yard field goal with 2 seconds left in regulation and another from 29 yards in overtime. Nevada redshirt freshman Anthony Martinez didn't miss his chance in overtime, hitting a 34-yarder that touched off a jubilant celebration from a sold out crowd on the Nevada campus.

"It is the greatest victory this university has ever had, I can tell you that," Nevada Coach Chris Ault said.

Nevada, ranked No. 19, won't get a BCS bowl bid, either, because that is life for schools not in BCS automatic qualifier conferences. But that didn't stop the overflow crowd at Mackay Stadium from celebrating the improbable win by their team, which was a 14-point underdog.

Nevada (11-1, 6-1) rallied from a 17-point halftime deficit to tie the game with 13 seconds left on a 7-yard pass to Rishard Mathews, who had two second-half touchdowns for the Wolf Pack. But Boise State (10-1, 6-1) appeared poised to pull the game out after Kellen Moore hit Titus Young with a 53-yard pass on the first play of scrimmage after the score.

Brotzman, who leads all active players in career scoring, pushed the short kick right. Nevada won the coin toss and deferred and Brotzman came out to try another field goal, but pulled it left.

"To be honest, I was on a knee on the sideline praying, hoping we'd get another shot," Nevada quarterback Colin Kaepernick said.

Said Ault: "We're a team of destiny. When he missed that field goal I said, 'Here we go guys, we got it now.'"

- Associated Press


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