The University of San Diego’s Emilio Martinez had the ball knocked away from his outstretched hand at the goal line with two seconds left as the Toreros narrowly missed upsetting UC Davis Saturday at their home opener.
The dramatic seesaw game at Torero Stadium ended with a final of 38-35.
USD (0-2) led by four with under four minutes remaining, using gains on the ground by Martinez and a 30-yard connection between quarterback Reid Sinnett and Alex Spadone.
With the ball at the four-yard line, Sinnett found an open Martinez running parallel to the goal line, but Davis’ Devon King jarred the ball loose before it fell for a touchback.
It was the Toreros’ third game ever against a top-five ranked team. In the previous two attempts, USD lost by double-digits.
UC Davis (1-1) opened with touchdowns on its first two possessions. However, Michael Armstead halted their momentum by returning a kickoff for a 93-yard touchdown midway through the first quarter to make it 14-7.
Davis eventually took a 21-14 lead into halftime. Coming out of the break, USD used a 79-yard drive to tie the game.
After Davis regained the lead, 31-28, early in the fourth quarter, Sinnett again found Dalton Kincaid for a touchdown, this time from 10 yards out. The Aggies in turn used an 81-yard drive to seize the lead for good – despite the last-second scare.
USD has a bye next week and will return to the field Sept. 21 when it hosts Harvard University.
– Staff reports