After blowing out opponents in the last two Las Vegas Bowls, the No. 19 Boise State Broncos had to scrap and claw their way to a 28-26 win over the Washington Huskies in what likely be one of the best and most competitive bowl games of the season.
The Broncos lost a nine-point lead in the second half, as the Huskies took a 26-25 lead on a 38-yard Travis Coons field goal with just over four minutes to play. Then they did what they have all year long, rising to the occasion with a well-executed drive that set up Michael Frisina’s 27-yard field goal with just over a minute left that turned out to be the game-winner.
For a team that has missed out on big bowl appearances in recent years due to missed field goals, it was sweet redemption.
“It’s every kicker’s to win a big game with a field goal,” Frisina said according to ESPN.com. “For this one to come on the last game of my career, you couldn’t ask for anything more.”
Washington had plenty of success running the ball, as Bishop Sankey rushed for 205 yards on 30 carries with one touchdown; a performance good enough to win him the game’s MVP award, but not good enough to get the win.
There’s a lot of mixed emotions going on,” Sankey said. “The MVP doesn’t mean so much when you come out a loser.”
Boise State took advantage of three Huskies turnovers, including two Keith Price interceptions and turned them into points with Joe Southwick effectively guiding the Broncos offense. Southwick completed 26 of his 38 attempts for 264 yards and two touchdowns without throwing an interception.
“All year I knew I could play at this level,” Southwick said. It’s just a lot of work, a lot of moving parts to put the puzzle together. We’ve just been executing at a high level in the offense.”
Washington will likely carry the bitterness of the defeat into next season’s rematch as the teams will meet in the opener at UW’s brand new stadium in late August.
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