Apodaca TD pass gives New Mexico 28-27 win over Hawaii
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) Austin Apodaca hit Dameon Gamblin for a 28-yard, final-minute touchdown to cap a game-winning 80-yard drive Saturday as New Mexico came back from 10-point halftime deficit to beat Hawaii 28-27.
After hitting 49- and 47-yard field goals, Rainbow Warriors kicker Rigoberto Sanchez missed a 22-yarder with two minutes to go, giving the Lobos (4-3, 2-1 Mountain West) a final chance to come back.
Apodaca, New Mexico’s backup quarterback but known for his arm, went 6-for-10 for 70 yards on the final drive that took 1:19. He converted two third-down passes to keep the drive alive.
Paul Harris rushed for 125 yards and two touchdowns for Hawaii (2-5, 0-3).
New Mexico safety Lee Crosby had two interceptions, including one with three seconds left, to squash the Rainbow Warriors’ last-ditch drive.
The Lobos’ Carlos Wiggins returned a kickoff from his end zone for a score, a school-record fifth time he’s taken a kick back for a touchdown. Teriyon Gipson had 80 rushing yards for New Mexico and Jhurell Pressley added 70.
Hawaii built a 24-14 halftime lead behind Harris’ two touchdowns and a score from Dylan Collie, who had six catches for 100 yards at the break. But Collie only caught one more ball, and Harris was hampered by injuries that finally drove him from the game for good in the fourth quarter.
His replacement, Steve Lakalaka, finished with 85 yards including 45 in the fourth quarter, helping put the Rainbow Warriors deep into New Mexico territory before Sanchez missed from 22 yards, sending it wide left.
On the winning drive, Apodaca found Gamblin three times for 47 yards, his only catches of the game. On the scoring toss, Apodaca absorbed a big hit just as he released the ball over the middle to Gamblin, who caught the ball inside the five and struggled through a tackle to land in the end zone.
The Rainbow Warriors have lost four in a row overall and six-straight to New Mexico.