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LA Tech sends UTEP to 0-11 with 42-21 win

NCAA Football: Louisiana Tech at Texas El Paso Ivan Pierre Aguirre-USA TODAY Sports

LA Tech jumped out to a 28-0 first half lead, and UTEP played catch up the rest of the afternoon from there as the Miners drop 0-11 losing their 2017 home finale Saturday.

The Bulldogs ran for 343 yards led by Jaqwis Dancy who ran for 135 yards, and Boston Scott ran for 134 yards, while quarterback J’Mar Smith ran in two touchdowns to lead the Dogs.

"It was 28-0 at the half, and that happened so fast,” Mike Price said after the game. “We were in that game at seven-zip there and all of a sudden three touchdowns in six minutes, bang, bang, bang, an interception and being down twenty-eight to nothing was a difficult situation for our players. We had three scoring opportunities; three drives in the first half. We missed a fumble, we missed a field goal then we got stopped on downs. We were down there, where we moved the ball in a situation where we had a chance to get at lease a couple of touchdowns, which would have made it a little bit different. I don't know if it would have changed what they [LA Tech] did in those six minutes, but it certainty would have put us a lot closer, fourteen to twenty-one at that point. Even in the third quarter I felt like, 'Hey, maybe the defense will get a pick and run one in' but they did a good job of really running the football in the fourth quarter and really kind of took us out of the game."

LA Tech scored on three straight second quarter drives to take a 28-0 lead into the halftime break, but the Miners showed signs off offensive life in the third quarter.

Josh Fields ran for a career high 137 yards in the game, and got UTEP on the board with an 11-yard touchdown run to cap off an impressive 14-play, 87 yard scoring drive to make 28-7 Tech with 5:33 left in the third quarter.

Ryan Metz took over at quarterback after Zack Greenlee left the game early on, and Metz hit Tyler Batson for an 83-yard catch and run, and all of sudden UTEP trimmed the lead to 28-14 heading into the fourth quarter.

Although UTEP was unable to stop the run, and LA Tech was in control after Smith hit Teddy Veal on a nine yard touchdown pass to finish 13-play, 75 yard drive to make it 35-14 Tech with 11:27 left in the game.

Metz threw a second touchdown pass in the fourth quarter, this time to Kavika Johnson from 33-yards out. Metz finished the night 9-for-17 passing for 203 yards, he also threw a pair of interceptions.

UTEP eclipsed the 300 yard mark of total offense for the first time all season, but LA Tech was 9-of-14 on third down tries, including a 4-for-4 mark in the final quarter while the UTEP defense desperately struggled to stop the run.

A forgettable 2017 season comes to a close next week when UTEP heads to UAB.