SportsDirect Inc. staff
Oct 12, 2014
Utah State 34, Air Force 16: Hunter Sharp caught 12 passes for 164 yards and two touchdowns while recording his fourth consecutive 100-yard game as the Aggies built a big halftime lead before holding off the visiting Falcons in a Mountain West Conference contest.
Quarterback Darell Garretson was 20-of-29 for 298 yards and also ran for a touchdown for Utah State (4-2, 1-0 MWC), which led 31-6 at intermission and has outscored its opponents 115-50 in the first half and 74-19 in the second quarter this season. Linebacker Nick Vigil recorded an interception, a rushing touchdown and 11 tackles while older brother Zach - also a linebacker - registered a career-high 22 tackles and a sack to help the Aggies win their sixth straight home game.
Kale Pearson played through a leg injury and was 9-of-18 for 169 yards with an interception while Jalen Robinette caught four passes for 105 yards for Air Force (4-2, 1-2), which had its three-game winning streak snapped. The Falcons committed four turnovers, bringing Utah State's total forced to 19 in its last five games.
Garretson, the reigning MWC Offensive Player of the Week, threw a 75-yard touchdown pass to Sharp on the first play from scrimmage and a 23-yarder to Sharp on the next possession as Utah State raced to 14-0 lead 3:15 into the contest. After Will Conant kicked the first two of his three field goals, the Aggies scored three times in the final 4:04 of the second quarter, highlighted by Vigil's 8-yard TD run and Garretson's 17-yard burst up the middle 47 seconds before halftime.
Air Force cut the deficit to 31-13 on Shayne Davern's 8-yard run with 21 seconds left in the third quarter and a blocked punt by Jacob Onyechi gave the Falcons the ball at the Utah State 14-yard line with 14:43 left. The Aggies' defense stiffened, though, and yielded only Conant's 22-yard field goal before Air Force got the ball back with 11:46 remaining after a fumble, but was forced to punt after a sack and a penalty led to a fourth-and-17 situation.