Nevada vs. Texas State


SAN MARCOS, Texas (AP) — Ismail Mahdi rushed for 216 yards and two touchdowns and Texas State scored 35 unanswered points to rally for a 35-24 victory over Nevada on Saturday.

Brandon Talton kicked a 30-yard field goal and KK Meier returned an interception 98 yards for a touchdown to give Nevada (0-4) a 10-0 lead after one quarter. The Wolf Pack took a 17-0 lead into halftime after Zac Welch recovered a fumble in the end zone.

Texas State (3-1) took the opening kickoff of the second half and put together a 10-play drive, capped by TJ Finley's 25-yard touchdown pass to Joey Hobert to get on the scoreboard. Finley connected with Kole Wilson for a 77-yard touchdown, needing just two plays on the Bobcats' next possession to close within 17-14. Mahdi scored on a 46-yard run and the Bobcats took a 21-17 lead into the final quarter.

Mahdi scored again on a 36-yard run with 8:30 left to play and Malik Hornsby ran for a 13-yard score with 4:50 to go to complete the Bobcats' unanswered run.

Finley completed 25 of 31 passes for 295 yards with one interception for Texas State. Mahdi did his damage on 21 carries. Wilson totaled 93 yards on four catches, while Hobert caught nine passes for 90 yards.

Brendon Lewis completed 21 of 32 passes for 151 yards with one interception for the Wolf Pack. Lewis also had a team-high 89 yards rushing on 12 carries.

Postgame Notes

• Nevada fell, 35-24, Saturday at Texas State.

• Nevada wrapped its non-conference slate Saturday, and will begin Mountain West play next Saturday at Fresno State.

• Brandon Talton’s 30-yard field goal in the first quarter gave Nevada its first lead of the season, at 3-0.

• Talton’s field goal was the 72nd of his career, tying him with Marty Zendejas atop Nevada’s all-time field goals made list.

• Cornerback KK Meier’s 98-yard pick-six in the first quarter is the second-longest in Nevada history ... the longest is 100 yards by Dameon Babers, Nov. 11, 2017, against San José State.

• Meier’s pick-six is Nevada’s first defensive touchdown since Sept. 3, 2022...against Texas State. The TD was a 34-yard interception return by Bentlee Sanders.

• The Nevada defense recorded its first two-takeaway game of the season, getting an interception and recovering a fumble.

• Jamaal Bell’s three kick returns brought his career total to 62, tying him with Elijah Mitchell (2013-16) for third all-time in Nevada history ... Bell’s 64 return yards brought his career total to 1,389, moving him into fourth on Nevada’s all-time list.

• Linebacker Drue Watts made his fourth takeaway of the season, and fifth in as many games, with his national-best fourth fumble recovery of the season ... Watts’ takeaway streak began in last season’s finale at UNLV, when he intercepted a pass.

• Quarterback Brendon Lewis rushed for a Nevada season-high 89 yards on 12 carries, and went 21-for-32 passing for 151 yards.

• Tight end Keleki Latu set career highs in receptions (six) and receiving yards (52) in the contest.

• Isaiah Essissima played two-way ball for the Wolf Pack Saturday night, making two tackles and breaking up a pass at his regular cornerback spot, and making two catches for 67 yards on offense.

• RUSH Marcel Walker-Burgess had a sack and 2.0 tackles-for-loss for Nevada Saturday.

• Nevada’s defense held Texas State to 1-for-4 on fourth downs, and had held the Bobcats to just 2-for-5 on red-zone scoring attempts.