EditorsNote: tweaked 1st graf
True freshman quarterback Hank Bachmeier passed for 263 yards and two touchdowns as No. 20 Boise State defeated visiting Air Force 30-19 on Friday night in the Mountain West opener for both teams.
Bachmeier, who completed 19 of 26 passes, threw scoring passes to junior receiver CT Thomas and junior tight end John Bates.
Thomas caught five passes for 119 yards, junior running back Robert Mahone rushed for 73 yards and two touchdowns on 13 carries, and senior nose tackle Sonatane Lui recorded a career-high 16 tackles for the Broncos (4-0, 1-0 MW).
Junior quarterback Donald Hammond III rushed for one touchdown and passed for one for Air Force (2-1, 0-1). Senior Jake Koehnke kicked two field goals for the Falcons.
Hammond missed most of the third quarter with a right ankle injury sustained in the second period. He returned late in the third and later tossed a 31-yard scoring pass to senior wideout Geraud Sanders with 2:27 remaining in the game.
Hammond completed 6 of 11 passes for 83 yards and one interception and rushed for 62 yards on 12 carries.
Air Force controlled the ball for 34:12 while both teams totaled 355 yards. The Falcons rolled up 242 yards on the ground.
Koehnke made a 31-yard field goal with 6:29 left in the third quarter to give Air Force a 13-10 lead. It was the first second-half points allowed by Boise State this season.
The Broncos responded with an 11-play, 77-yard drive, taking a 17-13 lead when Bachmeier tossed a 28-yard scoring pass to Bates with 34 seconds remaining in the quarter.
Boise State increased its lead to 23-13 on a 10-yard run by Mahone with 8:30 left. The extra point was blocked by junior Lakota Wills.
Air Force's next possession ended when Hammond was intercepted by junior cornerback Kekaula Kaniho with 7:17 remaining. That set up another 10-yard scoring run by Mahone to boost Boise State's lead to 17.
Koehnke kicked a 30-yard field goal as time expired in the first half to knot the score at 10-10.
The Falcons struck first when Hammond kept for an 8-yard score on the first play of the second quarter. The Broncos tied it when Bachmeier connected with Thomas on a 36-yard play down the right sideline with 12:01 remaining.
Senior Eric Sachse booted a 40-yard field goal to give the Broncos a 10-7 lead with 5:53 left in the half.
--Field Level Media