Heartbreaker

UNLV finally came out of its offensive doldrums with a 28-point second quarter in Saturday night's Mountain West Conference game with New Mexico. But four turnovers after halftime, including a lost fumble on its first possession of overtime, proved to be the Rebels' undoing again in a 39-36 loss at Sam Boyd Stadium.

But four turnovers after halftime, including a lost fumble on its first possession of overtime, proved to be the Rebels' undoing again in a 39-36 loss at Sam Boyd Stadium.

"I don't know what to say," UNLV head coach Mike Sanford said after watching his team blow a 14-point halftime lead. "It was a heartbreaker."

Senior quarterback Shane Steichen came off the bench for ineffective Rocky Hinds in the second quarter and threw five touchdown passes, including a 9-yarder to freshman wide receiver Ryan Wolfe with 1:09 remaining in regulation to get UNLV within two points, 36-34. Steichen then connected with sophomore wideout Renan Saint Preux for a two-point conversion to tie the game, 36-36.

The game eventually went into overtime. UNLV won the toss and elected to play defense first and held the Lobos to a 39-yard field goal by Kenny Byrd. It was Byrd's fourth field goal of the game.

Then on UNLV's first play of its overtime possession, Steichen couldn't elude blitzing middle linebacker Major Mosley who stripped the ball from the Rebel quarterback. Defensive end Michael Tuohy came up with the ball during a wild scramble and the Lobos (3-4, 1-2) started to celebrate their victory.

"I thought we were going to win," Sanford said. "I expected us to win. I thought we came back and I just believed we were going to win.

"We turned the ball over too much, that's the bottom line. We had two fumbles lost and threw two interceptions. They had no lost fumbles and one interception. That was the difference."

UNLV (1-5, 0-2), which has lost five straight games, travels to BYU (4-2, 2-0) on Saturday.

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