The UNLV Rebels have now dropped five straight games after starting their season 4-1. The Fresno State Bulldogs defeated the Rebels 37-30 in their Veterans Day matchup. The Rebels are currently 4-6 overall and 2-4 in Mountain West competition.
Although the Rebel attack started off well on the opening drive, K Daniel Gutierrez was only able to convert a 42-yard field goal. The Bulldog offense answered with its own scoring drive, erasing their 3-0 lead in the process. The Bulldogs took a 7-3 lead in the first quarter as QB Jake Haener made a 33-yard touchdown pass to WR Jalen Moreno-Cooper.
Early on, no lead was secure as the Rebels answered the Bulldogs’ touchdown drive with their own touchdown drive. To retake the lead 10-7, UNLV QB Doug Brumfield ran it in from five yards out.
Some defense was finally being played as the Rebels forced a Bulldog punt early in the second quarter. Despite having an opportunity to extend their lead to two possessions, the Rebel offense was once again forced to settle for a field goal. With a 48-yard field goal, Gutierrez gave the Rebels a 13-7 lead. The Bulldogs weren’t going away, as they went on to score a five-yard rushing touchdown to take the lead 14-13 on their subsequent possession.
The Rebels got the ball back with about six minutes left in the second quarter and ended up milking the rest of the clock in the half with their drive. But once again, they had to settle for a Gutierrez field goal. Gutierrez’s 29-yard field goal would give the Rebels a 16-14 lead at half.
The Bulldogs had the first possession of the third quarter, and after Dylan Lynch’s 26-yard field goal, they regained the lead 17-16. Incapable of making a play, the Rebel offense was forced to punt the ball back to the Bulldogs. Haener answered by hitting his second touchdown to increase the Bulldog lead to 24-16. The Bulldogs were trying to pull away, and the Rebels needed to react. They did so, but only adding three points via a 39-yard Gutierrez field goal. The Rebels were behind 24-19 going into the fourth quarter.
Lynch responded with a 23-yard field goal to extend the Bulldogs’ lead 27-19. UNLV RB Aidan Robbins then scored a long 66-yard rushing touchdown to put them just down two points. After a successful two-point conversion, the game was tied at 27. Haener and Moreno-Cooper connected once again, but this time on a long 65-yard touchdown of their own to regain the lead 34-27.
A crucial fourth and one came up for the Rebel offense. Robbins’ number was called, but the Bulldogs defense read the play perfectly and forced a turnover on downs. The Bulldog offense then took five minutes off the clock. and with a Lynch field goal, Fresno State went up 37-30 with two minutes remaining in the game. Gutierrez kicked a 33-yard field goal to make it a one possession game, but they needed to recover an onside kick to give them life. The Rebels failed to recover, and that was the ball game.
- RB Aidan Robbins rushed for a game-high 144 yards and a touchdown.
- K Daniel Gutierrez went a perfect 4/4 on field goals and 1/1 on extra points.
- DL Adam Plant Jr. finished the night with nine tackles, a sack, and two tackles for loss.
The Rebels will need to win their next two games to be bowl eligible. Their journey to become bowl eligible starts in Honolulu, Hawaii on Nov. 19 as they visit the Hawaii Rainbow Warriors.
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