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October 22, 2006The University of Wyoming won the 98th edition of the border war with Colorado State University 24-0 and took home the Bronze Boot for the 20th time, breaking a 19-19 tie with the Rams.
"It was good to bring the boot back home," said junior linebacker Brandon Haugen.
On a cold and blustery Saturday with winter in the air, the Cowboys defended their home field, and won their third in a row, and in the process put themselves into the conversation for a Mountain West Conference (MWC) championship. With only one loss in conference play and an overall record of 4-4, the Cowboys are in within shouting distance of being bowl eligible. The Cowboy three-game win streak in conference play is the first since 1999. Two of the Pokes' final three games are on the road, with their final home game two weeks from now vs. SDSU sandwiched in between.
"It's a big time turnaround. We had a couple of losses out of conference. Now we're going to try and win the conference," said senior defensive tackle Corey Mace.
With little headway being made by either offense, Colorado State was able to amass almost three times the offensive numbers as the Cowboys, but still had nothing to show for it on the scoreboard. The first half was more a defensive struggle, with the Cowboys coming out on top 3-0 after 30 minutes of cold-weather, smash-mouth football.
CSU was in position to score first in the half but missed a field goal attempt from 39 yards out with 12:16 left.
The only score of the half came on a nine-play, 39-yard Cowboy drive that took 2:41 off the clock in the second quarter. The highlight of the drive was a nice 17-yard strike by Wyoming freshman QB Karsten Sween to junior wide receiver Michael Ford on third and 11 on the CSU 40-yard line to keep the drive alive.
Four plays later, Cowboy freshman kicker Aric Goodman connected from 34 yards out to put Wyoming up 3-0 with 6:08 left in the half, which is how it stayed until halftime.
First Half Stats:
Wyoming: 15 carries for 13 yards
CSU: 14 carries for 51 yards
Wyoming: 12 attempts, 5 completions for 52 yards
CSU: 21 attempts, 10 completions for 96 yards
Wyoming: 65 yards
CSU: 147 yards
Time of Possession:
The second half was the Sween & Seldon Show, with Sween taking care of the air attack and sophomore running back Wynel Seldon moving the ball on the ground. The duo was able to reverse the statistical advantage CSU held a halftime. And more importantly, they were also able to add to the Pokes' advantage on the scoreboard.
"I wasn't trying to force it at all. It might have cost us sacks but not turnovers," said Sween.
Not to be outdone, the Cowboy defense pitched a shutout in the game to continue a season of stellar play. The defense was led by the outstanding play of senior strong safety John Wendling, who had 10 tackles and a fumble recovery.
"To beat CSU is one thing, but to post the first shutout for Wyoming in the series since 1950 something is pretty special," said Wendling.
On their second possession of the third quarter, the Pokes found the end zone for the first time in the game when Sween capped off a 6-play, 80-yard drive with a 44-yard touchdown pass to wide-open freshman wide receiver Derrick Levy on a blown CSU coverage, putting the Pokes up 10-0.
"It don't get no sweeter than that," said Levy.
After a CSU three and out, the Cowboys took over at their own 34-yard line and marched 66 yards in 9 plays. Sween sealed the deal on fourth and one with a 25-yard strike to Ford, making it 17-0 Wyoming with 3:22 left in the third quarter.
Colorado State had no luck at all, and on their first possession, their luck somehow got worse.
On fourth and one on their own 42, the Rams went for the first down with junior quarterback Caleb Hanie sneaking up the gut. Hanie was stuffed at the line of scrimmage, and he coughed up the football, Wendling recovered for the Pokes on the CSU 43-yard line.
Three plays later, Joseph Harris scored on a run up the middle from 25 yards out, putting Wyoming up 24-0 with 9:40 left in the game.
"The last three weeks have been music, awesome, a lot of accolades to everybody," said Wyoming head coach Joe Glenn.
Colorado State never really threatened to score the rest of the game, throwing two interceptions.
"They were a better football team than we were, and there is no coaching a way around it. They were waiting for us in a way they should have been probably. I was thinking we got our team ready to play, and when we left the field at halftime the way it was, I was feeling pretty good - and we still didn't score. I thought we would [score] some way or another, and we didn't. I give them credit. There is nothing to be said other than they played a good defensive game, and we didn't do a thing offensively," said CSU head coach Sonny Lubick.
Wyoming: 39 carries for 166 yards, 1 fumble (recovered)
CSU: 22 carries for 42 yards, 1 fumble (lost)
Wyoming: Seldon -18 rushes for 112 yards (first 100 yard rushing game for Seldon this year and fourth of his career)
CSU: Ohaeri - 8 rushes for 30 yards
Wyoming: 22 attempts, 10 completions for 152 yards
CSU: 45 attempts, 23 completions for 217 yards and 2 interceptions
Wyoming: 318 yards
CSU: 259 yards
Time of Possession:
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