Cowboys Can't Stop UNLV Comeback

Nov 29, 2003

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Associated Press Writer

LARAMIE, Wyo. (AP) - Kurt Nantkes came of the bench and passed for threetouchdowns to rally UNLV to a 35-24 win over Wyoming on Saturday.

Nantkes, who sat out last week with a strained groin, completed 9 of 18passes for 134 yards as UNLV (6-6, 2-5 Mountain West) forced Wyoming (4-8, 2-5)to share the conference cellar.

Nantkes relieved freshman Shane Steichen early in the second quarter withthe Rebels trailing 14-0 and, on his first play, hit Dyante Perkins for a21-yard TD pass.

UNLV still trailed 24-12 in the third quarter when Nantkes again connectedto Perkins from 21 yards out. The point-after kick hit the goal post and thescore remained 24-18.

Wyoming was forced to punt, and three plays later Perkins scored on a 5-yardrun to give the Rebels their first lead, 25-24. Larry Croom had a 58-yard runto set up the score.

Adam Steward stopped Wyoming quarterback Casey Bramlet on fourth-and-1 atthe UNLV 23 early in the fourth quarter, setting up a 76-yard Vegas drivecapped by a Nantkes-to-Greg Estandia strike that covered 31 yards.

Dillon Pieffer's second field goal, from 40 yards, capped the scoring.

Trailing 24-10, UNLV scored a safety when Wyoming's Roderick Jackson knockedthe ball out of his own end zone to prevent the Rebels' Adam Gajo fromrecovering a fumbled punt return by Josh Barge.

In the first half, Bramlet threw for 170 yards and two touchdowns to stakethe Cowboys to a 24-10 lead. He ran for a 1-yard score, tossed a 40-yardtouchdown to Ryan McGuffey and a 10-yard TD to C.R. Davis.

Bramlet was 27-of-44 passing for 321 yards and two touchdowns and finishedas Wyoming's career passing leader with 9,684 yards.