LARAMIE, Wyo. – A promising start didn’t last and the young University of Idaho football team lost 42-10 at Wyoming on Saturday.
After a scoreless first quarter, the Cowboys (1-1) slowly started to sway the momentum. After a 35-minute delay because of lightning, Wyoming converted a 14-0 lead into a 21-0 advantage going into the half after scoring with :49 left in the second quarter.
“Our defense played really well in the first quarter and our offense let them down,” coach Paul Petrino said after the Vandals fell to 0-2. “We had some opportunities to move the ball and give the defense a chance.”
The Vandals scored twice in the fourth quarter – on a 41-yard field goal by Austin Rehkow (who also averaged 48.2 yards on nine punts) and a one-yard run by James Baker.
In addition to being complimentary of the effort of the defense, Petrino said the play of quarterbacks Chad Chalich and Joshua McCain was solid. Chalich completed 22 of 32 passes for 182 yards and McCain was the Vandals’ leading rusher with 49 yards on 10 carries.
An emphasis on the running game didn’t pan out.
“It was disheartening,” Petrino said of the Vandals’ inability to run the ball (139 net yards). “I was going to run it all night. We just didn’t execute. We were doing a lot of silly things that kill you.”
Dezmon Epps had six catches for 61 yards and Mike LaGrone had six for 56 to lead the receiving corps. Jayshawn Jordan and Marc Millan led the defense with nine tackles each with Millan accounting for two sacks and three tackles for loss.
Brett Smith threw for four touchdowns and Shaun Wick rushed for 110 yards for the Cowboys.
Smith set a school record by netting 72 passing and rushing TDs in his career. Just a junior, Smith surpassed the previous record of 70 set by quarterback Casey Bramlet from 2000-03. He is one TD pass from tying Bramlet for the school record for touchdown passes.
Smith completed 22 of 38 passes for 295 yards for Wyoming. Three of his TD passes went to Dominic Rufran. Robert Herron caught five passes for 123 yards.
Wick became the first Wyoming player to rush for 100 yards in consecutive games since 2008. He rushed for 101 against Nebraska the previous week.