By ERIN BASS
After a tough 37-27 loss at Nevada (4-2, 3-0 WAC) this
past Saturday, the ’Dawgs are looking to come back in full force for this
year’s Homecoming battle against the University of North Texas (2-3) at 3 p.m.
Saturday at Joe Aillet Stadium.
For last Saturday’s game, with only 161 yards passing and
68 rushing, head coach Jack Bicknell said the Wolf Pack’s defense was a hand
“[Nevada] did a good job defensively against us,”
“We couldn’t run the ball like we had in the past and we
got in too many long yardage situations; second and ten, third and eight the
“We had some drops, some protection breakdowns, and it
seemed like we were missing execution on offense.”
Nevada started the scoring early in the first quarter
when wide receiver Nichiren Flowers caught a
seven-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Jeff Rowe. Then, just six minutes
later, he scored seven more points with a three-yard reception from running
back Tommy Haug.
But the Bulldogs proved they could run with the Wolf Pack
as they made the next three scoring drives.
Wide receiver Johnathan Holland
caught the first touchdown pass when Matt Kubik and
he connected with a 41-yard pass, making the score 7-14.
Then, Rowe fumbled the ball in the end zone and Tech
defensive lineman Eddie White recovered it for a second touchdown with 9:14
left in the second quarter.
Running back Freddie Franklin brought the rushing game
back to life as he made it through Nevada’s defensive line right on the goal line
and put Tech on top 21-14 with 2:32 left in the half.
The ’Dawgs only held their
seven-point edge briefly as the Wolf Pack scored a touchdown when Rowe made a
31-yard run into the end zone with 9:12 left in the third quarter.
With the score tied at 21, Nevada’s Brett Jaekle kicked a 36-yard field goal and put Nevada above by
Tech got on top for the second and final time in the
fourth quarter thanks to running back Patrick Jackson, who turned a three-yard
run into a scoring drive.
Danny Horwedel’s extra point
kick was blocked and the score sat at 27-24 until Nevada scored two field goals
and one touchdown in the last nine minutes of the game, finalizing the score
37-27. Tech’s offensive line was hurting last Saturday and Bicknell said it
“The offensive line kind of struggled protecting, and we
didn’t run as well,” Bicknell said.
“We’ve got three guys banged up, which isn’t an excuse
either, but was one of the factors in the offensive performance last week.”
Kubik, who had 13 pass completions
with 39 attempts, had the same sentiments as Bicknell.
“To be honest, I think Nevada played well. We obviously
didn’t play our best and offensively we just couldn’t get into the rhythm. A
big part of our offense is being able to run the ball first and when we can
establish the run, we aren’t able to get into the rhythm.”
This Saturday for Homecoming, the Bulldogs will take on
the North Texas Eagles.
“Being able to run the ball, being balanced like we were
against Hawaii and then defensively just being able to stop the run is going to
help us this weekend,” Bicknell said.
“In 2003, one of [North Texas’] rushers led in the
country and in 2004 another guy led the country and now they are both back for
2005. So they’ve got two very good running backs which we have to be able to
Kubik said it was a tough loss,
but that the team will be able to bounce back. “I think we have learned what we
do best; we just need to be able to execute it.”