Aztecs UNLV
San Diego State blocks a punt attempt by UNLV, a turnover that the Aztecs converted into a score. Photo credit:

San Diego State looked to be on the way to an easy win Saturday, but things got dicey near the end.

Wide receiver Ethan Dedeaux scored a 49-yard touchdown for the first of the Aztecs’ 17 points in the first half, but they had to hang on to beat UNLV 20-17.

SDSU won their fourth straight – the fifth straight on the road – and improved to 7-1 overall. Their 4-1 record tops the Mountain West.

The team’s lead fell to 20-10 at the end of the third quarter, and UNLV cut it further, using a 12-play, 77-yard drive to climb within three points with 5:57 to go.

SDSU went three-and-out and UNLV ate up the clock on another long drive, but Daniel Gutierrez’s 42-yard field-goal attempt hit the post.

“We made enough plays to lose and they did a great job of hanging in there and had a chance to win at the end,” coach Rocky Long told Xtra 1360 Fox Sports radio. “We’re lucky they missed the field goal. I really thought we were going to overtime.” 

Quarterback Ryan Agnew passed for 185 yards with one touchdown and one interception for San Diego State. Kicker Matt Araiza added two field goals, from 25 and 34 yards.

The Aztecs also scored on special teams when safety Trenton Thompson blocked a punt. Linebacker Caden McDonald recovered it in the end zone. Thompson also had a career-high 12 tackles.

After an off week, the Aztecs return home Nov. 9 against Nevada.

– Staff reports