No. 5 Bobcats Turn Back UC Davis, 34-17

Marques Barron (left) had a sack for UC Davis on Saturday.

Oct. 26, 2013

Final Stats

BOZEMAN, Mont. - Gabe Manzanares rushed for 179 yards and finished with 212 all-purpose yards for UC Davis but No. 5 Montana State jumped to an early lead en route to a 34-17 Big Sky Conference football win on Saturday afternoon at Bobcat Stadium.

The win snapped the Aggies' modest two-game road winning streak, dropping their record to 3-6 overall and 3-2 in the Big Sky. Montana State, which beat UC Davis for the third straight year, improved to 6-2 overall and 4-0 in the conference.

Manzanares rushed 27 times for his 179 yards, adding a nine-yard touchdown in the second quarter that helped cut the early 14-0 Bobcat lead to 14-10. He also caught four passes for 33 yards. Manzanares, a transfer from San Francisco City College, pushed his season rushing total to 890 yards.

Randy Wrightfinished with 159 passing yards while Hemmingsen caught 10 passes for 81 yards. Wright had 23 completions, pushing his career total to a school-record 702. He surpassed Jon Grant (2003-06) who had 690. 

Quarterback DeNarius McGhee threw for 230 yards and two touchdowns while running back Cody Kirk had 119 yards and two scores.

Linebacker Jonathan Bias had a team-high nine tackles for the Aggies, defensive ends Nick King and Marques Barron each had sacks, defensive end Colin Kelly and tackle Khalid Jones shared a sack, and safety Charles Boyettfinished with eight tackles and a forced fumble.



The Bobcats wasted little time getting on the scoreboard first, taking just four plays for their first touchdown on the opening drive. McGhee connected on a pair of short passes before finding Shawn Johnson down the far sideline for a 47-yard score just two minutes into the game.

The Aggies were forced to a pair of three-and-outs on two of their first three drives while missing a long 49-yard field goal on their second one which came at the end of a 38-yard possession.

Montana State capitalized on its early defense, putting together a 10-play, 68-yard drive that featured a pair of passes totaling 19 yards to Tiai Salanoa, and a 10-yard catch by Kirk to the Aggie 5-yard line. McGhee then found Chad Newell for a one-yard TD pass and a 14-0 lead in the early moments of the second quarter.

UC Davis found its first points with six minutes left in the half as Brady Stuartconnected on a field goal from 29 yards. Manzanares rushed for 47 yards on the drive including a highlight-film quality run down the left sideline in which he broke six tackles before finally being brought down at the Bobcats' 18.

Good defense forced Montana State to punt after three plays and the Aggies took advantage by going 51 yards on four plays. Wright found Tom Hemmingsenfor a 20-yard gain, while Manzanares needed just two carries to cover the final 27 yards and score the touchdown, making it 14-10 with 1:59 left in the half.

The Bobcats, however, weren't through for the half, needing just five plays to go 70 yards for Kirk's three-yard touchdown run with 42 seconds to go. McGhee had a 45-yard pass completion to Johnson to help highlight the drive. Montana State led 21-10 at halftime.

Manzanares had a big first half for the Aggies, picking up 113 yards on 13 carries while Wright threw for 75 yards, becoming just the third UC Davis quarterback to go over 8,000 career yards.

UC Davis punted on its first two drives of the third quarter, the second possession coming after safety Charles Boyett caused a fumble by Brian Floetkoetter that was recovered by Jonathan Perkinsat the Aggies' 22-yard line.

The Bobcats opened their lead to 27-10 late in the quarter , moving 77 yards on 10 plays for an 11-yard touchdown run by receiver Jon Ellis. McGhee rushed for 30 yards on the drive. UC Davis defensive tackle Kyle DeVaughnblocked the extra point, the third blocked kick for the Aggie special teams this year.

Kirk capped a 57-yard drive with a two-yard touchdown run for a 34-10 lead. Tom Hemmingsenhelped the Aggies answer late in the fourth quarter, catching a two-yard touchdown pass from Wright with 1:24 to go. Manzanares rushed for 25 yards and caught an 18-yard pass on the drive.

UC Davis will play two of its final three games at home beginning with the "Battle for the Golden Horseshoe" against Cal Poly next Saturday at 4 p.m.