Broncos defense dominates Bowling Green in 20-7 win
BOISE, Idaho (AP) -Ian Johnson rushed for 97 yards, scored two touchdowns and the Boise State defense did the rest en route to a 20-7 victory over Bowling Green Saturday night.
The Broncos (2-0) held the Falcons scoreless until the fourth quarter, then put the game away in the final minutes by forcing another costly Falcons turnover.
With Bowling Green driving deep into Broncos territory, backup quarterback Andrew Beam coughed up the ball and Boise State safety Jeron Johnson recovered it at the 25-yard line.
For the Falcons (1-2), it was another sign of early season ball security issues. Last week, Bowling Green had five turnovers, including three in the final quarter, in a loss to Minnesota.
The Broncos got off to an early start, scoring three touchdowns in the first half.
Freshman quarterback Kellen Moore completed his first 11 passes, which he spread over two scoring drives. Moore finished 18-of-23 for 180 yards and scored the game's first touchdown on a 1-yard dive in the first quarter. Boise State's two-point conversion attempt failed.
On the next possession, Moore led a 98-yard Broncos drive. The biggest play came when Moore rolled out and floated a 39-yard pass to Jeremy Childs, making his first start after serving a 1-game suspension.
Five plays later, Johnson scored from a yard out, giving the Broncos a 13-0 lead with 14:03 in the half.
Johnson carried the ball just 13 times, and used his biggest run of the game to set up Boise State's final score. After taking a pitch from Moore, Johnson ran down the sidelines for 53 yards before being knocked out at the 20. Two plays later, he ran 6 yards for a score, putting the Broncos up 20-0 at halftime.
Boise State had 340 total yards on offense, including 160 on the ground, while the defense had two takeaways and a pair of sacks.
Bowling Green also blew two scoring opportunities early.
On the opening drive, the Falcons marched into Broncos territory, but kicker Sinisa Vrvilo's 41-yard field goal bounced off the right upright. In the second quarter, he missed a 35-yard attempt wide left.
In the second half, Bowling Green controlled the ball, but failed until the fourth quarter to put points on the board. The Falcons dominated time of possession, keeping the ball for 34:35 compared to 25:25 for Boise State.
The Falcons finally snapped the drought early in the fourth quarter, scoring with the help of some trickery on fourth down. On 4th and goal from the 4-yard line, receiver Freddy Barnes caught a pitch in the backfield then found a wide open Jimmy Scheidler in the end zone.
The Falcons defense shut down the Broncos on the next possession.
With 7:45 left, the Falcons took over and marched into Broncos territory. But with quarterback Tyler Sheehan on the sidelines shaking off a hard hit, backup Andrew Beam scrambled up field then lost the ball on a jarring hit by Billy Winn.
Sheehan was 21-of-34 for 200 yards and the Falcons gained 307 total yards.
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