Aggies get run over by Colorado

Senior running back Lawrence Vickers scored three times and the Buffaloes' defense held the Aggies to 181 yards of total offense as Colorado shutout New Mexico State, 39-0 Saturday night at Folsom Field.

The Aggies (0-2, 0-0 WAC) were led in the loss by senior Linebacker Jimmy Cottrell (Castle Rock, Colo.) who tied a career high with 19 tackles in his first game back in the state of Colorado since graduating from Douglas County High School.

Despite giving up of 400 yards of total offense, the Aggie defense did do its best to keep NMSU in the game early as it held Colorado to a pair of field goals and just a 13-0 lead late into the second quarter.

Vickers, who scored the game's first touchdown on a two-yard plunge into the end zone at 9:26 of the first quarter, finished the night with 46 yards on six carries. Fellow running back Hugh Charles led the ground attack with a game-high 106 yards on 21 carries. Senior quarterback Joel Klatt was 18 of 25 for 186 yards and a pair of touchdowns as the Buffs racked up 471 yards in total offense.

In the win, Colorado (2-0, 0-0 Big 12) converted 9 of 16 third downs while New Mexico State ended the game 2 of 14 on third-down tries and 0-for-1 on fourth down conversion attempts.

Junior Mason Crosby, who kicked a game-winning field goal with four second remaining a week ago to lead Colorado over in-state rival Colorado State, lived up to his Preseason All-American status again Saturday night as he converted on 2-of-3 field goals and booted 7-of-8 kickoffs out of the back of the end zone.

Offensively, the Aggies were led by junior quarterback Royal Gill (Boise, Idaho) and senior wide receiver Paul Dombrowski (Hesperia, Calif.). Gill finished the night 17 for 30 for 176 yards while Dombrowski caught three passes for 77 yards, including a career-long 54-yard reception to open the second half.

In the first half, the Buffs racked up 218 total yards to just 25 for the Aggies as Hughes paced the ground game with 55 yards on 12 carries and Klatt was13 of 19 for 135 yards and a touchdown. Colorado was 3 of 7 on third down conversions and a perfect 4 for 4 inside the red zone in the first half.

Despite just one first down in the opening half, the Aggie defense and special teams did their best to keep the visitors close. Cottrell led the effort with a team-high 12 tackles, including 10 unassisted while Evans averaged 43.8 yards on four punts, including a 51-yard boot in the first quarter.

On its first possession of the game, Colorado went 42 yards in seven plays for the first score of the game. Sophomore Stephone Robinson set the Buffs up excellent field position with an 18-yard punt return to the Aggie 42-yard-line. After a holding penalty gave the Buffs a first-and-goal on the Aggie two-yard-line, Colorado found the end zone as Vickers plunged over the goal line to put the home team up by a touchdown.

After giving up a touchdown on the Buffs' first possession of the game, the Aggie defense kept the visitors in the game, giving up just two field goals over the next 24:26 of the opening half. Despite drives of nine and 11 plays, the NMSU defense stiffened in the red zone, forcing Crosby to convert field goals of 33 and 28 yards to put Colorado up 13-0.

With under a minute-and-a-half remaining in the second quarter, Colorado tacked on a safety when Evans was forced to boot the ball out of the back of the end zone after the snapped sailed over his head.

With 46 second remaining in the half, the Buffs scored again thanks to a four-play 63-yard drive that ended in a Klatt to Lawrence three-yard touchdown strike to head into halftime leading 22-0.

Out of the locker room, the hometown Buffs did not miss a beat as they drive 59 yards in nine plays for their third touchdown on the night to make the score 29-0. The drive was capped went Klatt hit Quin Sypniewski with an 11-yard strike for the senior's first career touchdown reception.

With just under five minutes remaining in the third quarter, the Buffs scored their final touchdown on the night as Vickers took a handoff and bulled his way over the goal line for an 11-yard scoring run to put Colorado up 36-0.

In the fourth quarter, the Aggies took the ball inside the Colorado 20-yard line, but were unable to convert as the Buffs blocked a field goal attempt and then intercepted a pass from Gill in the back of the end zone.

The Aggies will look to break into the win column next week as they travel to Albuquerque to face I-25 rival New Mexico next Saturday at 6:00 p.m.

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