Utah 31, New Mexico 24
ALBUQUERQUE (AP) _ Mike Fouts threw for two touchdowns and ran for another, and defensive end Chad Kauhaahaa came up with a fourth quarter, fourth-down defensive stop Saturday night to lead Utah to a 31-24 win over New Mexico.
Fouts scored from a yard out on Utah’s opening drive, then threw second-half TD passes of 54 yards to Jeff Jax and 25 yards to Donny Utu.
Kauhaahaa, meanwhile, stuffed New Mexico tailback Lennox Gordon on a fourth-and-inches play at the Utes’ 30-yard line with the Utah holding onto a 24-17 lead with 10:33 left.
Utah (8-2, 6-1 Western Athletic Conference) also got a 1-yard TD from Juan Johnson and a 29-yard field goal from Daniel Pulsipher.
New Mexico (5-5, 2-5) struggled offensively throughout the game against Utah’s swarming defense, but quarterback Donald Sellers kept the Lobos close by scoring a career-high three touchdowns on runs of 17, 4 and 4 yards.
New Mexico, which converted on just one of its first eight third-down attempts, cut Utah’s lead to 24-17 on Sellers’ second touchdown. The Lobos were 4-for-4 on third down situations in the drive and Sellers went the final four yards with 2:16 left in the third quarter. Sellers appeared to be trapped at the Utah 7, but managed to dodge three defenders and just got the ball across the goal line.
New Mexico was on the move again on its next possession and faced a fourth-and-inches at the Utah 30. The Lobos tried to go wide with Gordon, but Kauhaahaa broke through to stop him.
Fouts then found Utu open in the corner of the end zone for a 31-17 Utah lead, but Sellers got the Lobos again back within a touchdown with an 11-play, 83-yard drive in 2 1/2 minutes. Sellers again scrambled in with 4:12 left, but Utah was able to run out all but the final 12 seconds.
Fouts was 17-for-25 passing for 240 yards.