Oct. 13, 2012
LARAMIE, Wyo. (AP) - Backup quarterback Kale Pearson scored on a 5-yard run in the fourth quarter on his only play of the game, lifting Air Force over Wyoming 28-27 Saturday night.
Connor Dietz, who left the game for one play because of an injury, passed for 141 yards and two touchdowns for the Falcons (3-3, 2-1 Mountain West). Dietz rushed for 92 yards.
Wyoming (1-5, 0-2) played without starting quarterback Brett Smith, who was scratched just before the game because of an undisclosed injury. Entering the weekend, Smith was ranked ninth in the nation in total offense, averaging 336 yards a game.
Smith was replaced by freshman Jason Thompson, who passed for 195 yards and a touchdown and rushed for 75 yards.
For the second straight week, Wyoming faced and held in check the nation's leading rusher.
Air Force running back Cody Getz, who entered averaging 177.4 yards a game, was held to just 41 yards on 10 carries. He left the game late in the third quarter with a lower left leg injury. The previous week, Wyoming held Nevada's Stefphon Jefferson, who was averaging 175.4 yards a game, to 78 yards.
The Falcons entered the game averaging 389.6 rushing yards a contest - second in the nation.
Wyoming held Air Force to 230 rushing yards on 51 carries.
But the Cowboys gave up two long TD passes - a 41-yard strike from Dietz to Don Strickland and 46-yard score from Dietz to Ty MacArthur.
Still, the Cowboys led 27-21 entering the fourth quarter, thanks to a 9-yard run by Shaun Wick, 4-yard TD pass from Thompson to Chris McNeill, 1-yard run by D.J. May and two field goals by Stuart Williams.
When Dietz was shaken up after being tackled on Wyoming's 5-yard line on a short run, Pearson came in, faked a handoff and sprinted around the right end, diving for the pylon at the front corner of the end zone. He was initially ruled out of bounds, but a review of the play revealed that he got the ball over the pylon for a touchdown.
Dietz finished the game for Air Force.
Wyoming outgained Air Force 447-371 and had an 11-minute advantage in time of possession, but the Cowboys failed to score in the final quarter.