LARAMIE, Wyo. (AP) — Its high-scoring offense largely kept at bay, Utah State turned to defense and special teams to earn its sixth straight victory, 24-16 over Wyoming on Saturday.
Jontrell Rocquemore’s 20-yard interception return on the first play of the second half set up a 3-yard TD run by Darwin Thompson, and Savon Scarver’s 99-yard kick return late in the third — his third career scoring return — put Utah State (6-1, 3-0 Mountain West) up 24-6.
Wyoming freshman quarterback Sean Chambers, No. 3 on the depth chart, came off the bench to spark a long-dormant offense with 100 yards rushing and 62 passing. He led the Cowboys (2-6, 0-4) to three scores in four drives to cut the lead to 24-16 with 5:32 remaining.
Wyoming got the ball back at its own 25 with 2:12 to play but Tyler Vander Waal came back in and misfired on four straight passes, and Utah State ran out the clock.
Thompson’s 56-yard scamper on the third play of the game was the only touchdown of the first half, which ended with the Aggies up 10-3. He finished with 109 yards on 17 carries.
Jordan Love, who was completing 67.2 percent of his passes coming in, was 12 of 28 for 53 yards and an interception.
NIco Evans led all carriers with 133 yards on 25 attempts, including a 53-yard TD run for the Cowboys.
Utah State: The Aggies rolled into Laramie with the No. 2 scoring offense in the nation (51.7) and were averaging 478.7 yards per game, but Love misfired repeatedly and Utah State finished with only 194 yards and punted a season high nine times. Still, the defense held when necessary to keep the Aggies atop the Mountain Division.
Wyoming: The offense (128th in scoring, 127th in yardage) continued to struggle until coach Craig Bohl gave play-calling duties to Chambers. The freshman fumbled on his first series in the first quarter and returned to bench. But after Tyler Vander Waal threw an interception on the first play of the second half, Chambers led the offense until the final series.
Utah State will host New Mexico next Saturday. The Aggies won last year in Albuquerque 24-10.
Wyoming visits Colorado State on Friday, the 110th meeting in the series. The Cowboys have won the last two.