By Tom Taylor
Special to BVN
San Diego – The Aztecs earned a Mountain West Conference selection to play BYU in this year’s Poinsettia Bowl. They were 7-1 in conference play and had won seven games in a row, until the BYU Cougars abruptly ended their season 23-6.
For most of the first half and well into the 3rd quarter, both teams traded punts and posted field goals. San Diego State’s Chance Marden kicked field goals of 23 and 27 yards to take a slight 6-3 lead into the 4th quarter.
At the 12:32 mark of the 4th quarter, BYU made the first of several big plays to put the Aztecs away. The first was a fumble recovery by Cougar linebacker Kyle Van Noy for three-yards and a touchdown. The Aztecs had difficulty making first downs after that as the energy and momentum was clearly with BYU.
Jamaal Williams, former Summit High School standout, went untouched on a 14-yard run for another fourth quarter score. On the next possession, San Diego State quarterback Adam Dingwell was intercepted by none other than Kyle Van Noy (game Defensive MVP) who promptly ran the ball in for another Cougar score.
The low scoring contest was dominated by big plays in the final quarter. Everything went BYU’s way. Their athletic defense swarmed to the ball and took advantage of every opportunity. Unfortunately for the Aztecs, running back Walter Kazee (Cajon H.S./San Bernardino) would miss his final game with a torn ACL. BYU 23 San Diego State 6.
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