In a night that saw the Broncos take the field without Marco Notarainni, Ashton Jeanty, Kanohi Kaniho, Demitri Washington and others, Boise State fought hard and were almost never out of it, but ultimately came up short.
Fresno got the ball first and sustained an efficient 78 yard drive that concluded in the end zone for a Fresno touchdown after an elapsed two minutes and 44 seconds. The connection was made between Mikey Keene and his tight end, Tre Watson. Fun fact: It was actually the first time so far this season the Broncos had allowed a touchdown on an opponent’s opening drive.
Fresno 7, Boise State 0
After the Broncos failed to make anything of their first possession (for those wondering, Taylen Green got the start…for one play), the bad guys got the ball back and put another three on the board with a 48 yard field goal, after a 35 yard drive that lasted 3:39
Fresno 10, Boise State 0
Thankfully, the Broncos finally found a little rhythm on offense with their third possession and got Dalmas in range to put one between the uprights from 45 yards out. Not only did it put 3 points on the board for the good guys, but it tied Kyle Brotzman’s record for field goals in a career with 67
Fresno 10, Boise State 3
Boise State had a nice drive going and got down into Fresno State territory before Madsen threw a ball right to a Fresno defender. The Bulldogs took the ball 68 yards the other way and ultimately put another one through the uprights from 22 yards out.
Fresno 13, Boise State 3
Yet again, the Broncos had a nice, little drive going. Primarily on the timely spin moves of one George Holani; who, we should not forget, is more than capable of being one helluva feature back. Unfortunately, a nearly 50 yard attempted pass from Taylen to McAlister was intercepted in the end zone by a Fresno defender. Thankfully, however, the Bulldogs failed to get additional points and when the Broncos got the ball back on an Oladipo pick a few possessions later, they made it count! After a 12 play drive that spanned 67 yards and somehow only took 1:37, Madsen to Bowens resulted in six more points before half.
Fresno 13, Boise State 10
In a decidedly unfortunate turn of events, the Bulldogs returned the ensuing kick 95 yards for a touchdown…
Fresno 20, Boise State 10
The Broncos started the second half with the ball, but it was the Bulldogs that were the first to actually do something with it once it was their turn. After Fresno received the punt, they took 7:25 off the clock, traversed 68 yards, and ultimately scored on a one yard run from Elijah Gilliam.
Fresno 27, Boise State 10
The Broncos answered right back with a six play, 75 yard drive that only took 2:56. The passing game was heavily featured in the effort to score, with McAlister catching one pass for 35 yards and Austin Bolt another for 33–his first career catch. Holani was the one that capitalized, from one yard out, for his first rushing touchdown of the season.
Fresno 27, Boise State 17
The next team to add some numbers to their score was the Broncos again. This time on an 11-play, 43 yard drive. The drive was sustained on a rather incredible 4th and 13th fake punt pass from James Ferguson-Reynolds to…defensive end, Jayden Virgin?? Okay! We accept. Soon after, Dalmas broke the record for career field goals that he had previously tied, kicking his 68th from 38 yards out.
Fresno 27, Boise State 20
The Bulldogs matched it with a field goal of their own after 40 yards and 2:42 off the clock.
Fresno 30, Boise State 20
The Broncos answered in emphatic fashion with a VERY efficient 80 yard drive that took eight plays but only 2:04 off a rapidly dwindling clock. The score came when Madsen took off for what initially seemed to just be a heads-up scramble for a first, but after a few head fakes and weaves, Maddux found himself 27 yards downfield and in the end zone for another six points.
Fresno 30, Boise State 27
Bad guys. 75 yards–the final 52 of which came on a back fracturing touchdown.
Fresno 37, Boise State 27
After gunning down the field with less than two minutes remaining, the Broncos brought the field goal team out on fourth down with no timeouts left. Dalmas dang near grazed one of the uprights, but still put it through from 52 yards.
Fresno 37, Boise State 30, Final
That would end up being the final score as the Broncos fall to 4-5 on the season. Which is… not the best.
Minor silver linings:
-The Mountain West is still not out of reach, but very much no longer in the Broncos’ control.
-George Holani is still an absolute stud. 79 yards rushing and 61 yards receiving. Great all-purpose numbers, but the manner in which he got them was the most impressive part. Still just a very elusive man.
Other cloud related things that are more “mushroom” than “silver”
-The coverage units are still struggling. The kickoff return for a touchdown allowed before halftime was the second this season that would have made the difference in the game.
-The defense actually had some pretty bright moments, but wilted at some other key points. Most notably, allowing a 52 yard touchdown when they couldn’t allow another first down. This unit has made some real progress in recent weeks, but they are still very very young and it still shows up sometimes.
-Turnovers are still killing the Broncos. Madsen and Green both threw interceptions. One of them–Madsen’s–on what very likely would have been a scoring drive. Honestly, with as well as the offense was operating, Taylen’s drive could have just as easily been a score too. It had made it to midfield before the interceptions
Other random observation
-Taylen Green didn’t see the field much after that interception…
The Broncos will be back in action next weekend, the 11th, at home, vs the New Mexico Lobos.
We hope to see you all there. Until then, and always (yes…even now):