Air Force hammers UH 56-26

By KALANI TAKASE

The Associated Press
HONOLULU — It’s likely that Mike Schmidt won’t soon forget his first trip to Hawaii.
Air Force’s backup quarterback came off the bench to account for four touchdowns and the Falcons beat  the University of Hawaii football 56-26 on Saturday night at Aloha Stadium.
Air Force (5-2, 3-1 Mountain West), which had 324 total yards by halftime, scored touchdowns on its first four possessions and seven of 10 overall.
Schmidt, a fourth-year senior with just three carries for 28 yards  — and no pass attempts — in five career games prior to Saturday, relieved starter Donald Hammond III, who left the game midway through Air Force’s first possession after falling on his right (throwing) shoulder.
“It’s a pretty great business trip,” Schmidt said. “It’s a beautiful place to be and we played a great team tonight and just playing with my buddies is the best feeling in the world. It’s a memorable trip for sure.”
Schmidt rushed for 120 yards on 14 carries, including scores of 1, 61 and 18 yards. He also completed five of six passes for 147 yards, with a 75-yard TD pass to Geraud Sanders, who finished with three receptions for 116 yards.
Air Force coach Troy Calhoun referenced legendary UCLA men’s basketball coach John Wooden when he spoke about Schmidt seizing the moment.
“You hope that every guy realizes that there can be an opportunity. There was a pretty good basketball coach that worked at UCLA and one of his favorite sayings is, ‘If I’m prepared then perhaps my chance will come,’ and Mike works extremely hard and it’s neat to see a guy get an opportunity and he made the utmost of it,” Calhoun said.
Hawaii coach Nick Rolovich said the Falcons’ change at quarterback did not have an effect on his team, but he credited Schmidt for his performance nonetheless.
“I don’t think so, I think they run their offense and maybe he’s better at certain things,” Rolovich said. “I don’t think that was necessarily what we saw tonight. I mean, they found something they wanted to work and he was very effective for them.”
Timothy Jackson ran for 113 yards and a touchdown and Kadin Remsberg added 91 yards and two scores on the ground for the Falcons.
Hawaii’s Cole McDonald threw for 404 yards and three touchdowns on 34-of-52 passing with one interception — which Milton Bugg III returned for a 92-yard pick-6 in the closing minutes.
Jared Smart caught 11 passes for 140 yards for the Rainbow Warriors (4-3, 1-2), who finished with 486 total yards, but committed two turnovers and allowed four sacks.
UH next travels to Albuquerque to face New Mexico next Saturday.
Air Force 7 21 7 21—56
Hawaii 3 17 0 6—26
First Quarter
HAW—FG Meskell 41, 9:46
AF—Remsberg 2 run (Koehnke kick), 6:09
Second Quarter
AF—Schmidt 1 run (Koehnke kick), 14:35
HAW—Stovall 59 pass from McDonald (Meskell kick), 13:44
AF—G.Sanders 75 pass from Schmidt (Koehnke kick), 13:33
HAW—FG Meskell 27, 6:19
AF—Remsberg 7 run (Koehnke kick), 3:34
HAW—Stovall 5 pass from McDonald (Meskell kick), 2:04
Third Quarter
AF—T.Jackson 10 run (Koehnke kick), 7:19
Fourth Quarter
HAW—J.Ward 10 pass from McDonald (pass failed), 14:54
AF—Schmidt 61 run (Koehnke kick), 13:37
AF—Schmidt 18 run (Koehnke kick), 7:49
AF—Bugg 92 interception return (Koehnke kick), 4:01
A—23,757.
AFHAW
First downs 22 26
Rushes-yards 51-353 20-82
Passing 169 404
Comp-Att-Int 6-7-0 34-53-1
Return Yards 1 136
Punts-Avg. 2-48.5 3-44.0
Fumbles-Lost 2-0 3-1
Penalties-Yards 6-55 5-50
Time of Possession 29:52 30:08
INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS
RUSHING—Air Force, Schmidt 14-120, T.Jackson 13-113, Remsberg 11-91, Murla 3-11, Birdow 6-11, Hammond 1-9, Stoner 1-5, (Team) 1-(minus 1), G.Sanders 1-(minus 6). Hawaii, McDonald 10-41, Reed 6-36, Holly 3-8, Cordeiro 1-(minus 3).
PASSING—Air Force, Hammond 1-1-0-22, Schmidt 5-6-0-147. Hawaii, Cordeiro 0-1-0-0, McDonald 34-52-1-404.
RECEIVING—Air Force, G.Sanders 3-116, Waguespack 1-39, Birdow 1-16, T.Jackson 1-(minus 2). Hawaii, Smart 11-140, Byrd 7-59, J.Ward 6-89, Sharsh 4-38, Stovall 3-71, Phillips 2-10, Holly 1-(minus 3).
MISSED FIELD GOALS—None.

Rainbow Wahine dominate Highlanders in sweep

The Maui News

Amber Igiede had 11 kills, and Hanna Hellvig and McKenna Ross each added 10 as the 22nd-ranked University of Hawaii women’s volleyball team swept past UC Riverside on Friday night at the Stan Sheriff Center in Honolulu.

Igiede also had three blocks while hitting .714 for the match, and Hellvig added eight digs in the Rainbow Wahine’s 25-17, 25-18, 25-12 victory.

UH (15-3, 5-2 Big West Conference) dominated in every statistical category: .242 to .022 in hitting percentage, 10.0-6.5 in blocks, 40-28 in digs and 5-0 in aces.

Norene Iosia had 17 assists and 19 digs, and Bailey Choy had 13 assists for Hawaii.

Ayla Fresenius led the Highlanders (5-13, 1-6) with seven kills.

The Rainbow Wahine next host UC Davis on Sunday.

Vrabel says Titans looking for spark with switch to Tannehill, won’t rule out return to Mariota

The Associated Press

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — The Tennessee Titans want to jump-start an offense that has just one touchdown over the past 10 quarters, so they’re turning to veteran quarterback Ryan Tannehill and benching Marcus Mariota.

At least for Sunday.

“We’re trying to get a little spark, trying to evaluate what we’re doing and how we’re functioning as an offense,” coach Mike Vrabel said Wednesday.

Tannehill, the eight-year veteran with 88 career starts for Miami, will make his first Tennessee start against the Chargers (2-4).

“I just felt like now was the time,” Vrabel said.

Not that Mariota, the No. 2 pick overall in 2015 and 2014 Heisman Trophy winner with Oregon, is benched for the final 10 games left on his $20.9 million contract.

“I wouldn’t rule anything out,” Vrabel said of the Saint Louis School graduate starting again this season. “This is a decision that we made for this week. We’re going to need Marcus in some form or fashion throughout the season, but I think the most important thing is this week.”

Chargers coach Anthony Lynn said his team will be preparing for both quarterbacks. He coached against Tannehill when he was in the AFC East and noted that Tannehill played against the Chargers a couple years ago too.

“He’s a good player,” Lynch said of Tannehill. “He can move around, create, throw the ball.”

Vrabel didn’t make the move to bench Mariota in a vacuum.

The second-year head coach said controlling owner Amy Adams Strunk, general manager Jon Robinson and other coaches were part of the decision.

The Titans (2-4) have scored just 98 points through six games — and the defense, the NFL’s No. 5 scoring unit, contributed an interception return for a touchdown to that total.

Now Tannehill is getting his shot after being acquired from Miami in March via trade, a move originally made to upgrade the backup QB position. The eight-year veteran has a career quarterback rating of 87 and has 20,578 yards passing with 123 touchdowns and 76 interceptions. The eighth overall pick out of Texas A&M in 2012, Tannehill is being paid $1.75 million under a one-year deal.

“It’s been a little while since I was a starter right? Almost half a year?” Tannehill said. “But it’s nothing new for me to go out and play football. It’s what I love to do. I love competing … and being on the field. So nothing new, just different colors.”

Tannehill was 13 of 16 for 144 yards with one interception on 30 snaps coming off the bench in the 16-0 loss in Denver. He also was sacked four times and now has been sacked 252 times in his career.

The Titans have allowed an NFL-worst 29 sacks despite an offensive line they have heavily invested in.

Taylor Lewan became the league’s highest-paid left tackle last year, left guard Rodger Saffold was the fourth-highest paid lineman signed in March, center Ben Jones got an extension Aug. 30 and the team used draft picks on rookie right guard Nate Davis (third-round pick) and right tackle Jack Conklin (No. 8 pick overall in 2016).

“This isn’t a fail by Marcus,” Saffold said. “This is a fail by this offense, and we just have to understand that.”

Vrabel benched Mariota in the third quarter after 40 snaps, the first time he had been pulled because of poor play and not injury. Mariota was 7 of 18 for 63 yards and two interceptions. Mariota said he was disappointed at not taking advantage of his opportunity.

“I can learn and grow from this situation,” Mariota said. “This isn’t going to bring me down. This isn’t going to end my career. This is an opportunity for me to grow, and I’m going to make the most of it.”

In his career, Tannehill is 42-46 as a starter with one winning season at 10-6 with Miami in 2016 while never playing in a postseason game. Mariota is 29-32 as a starter, though he is 1-1 in the playoffs.

AP source: Titans bench Mariota for Tannehill

By TERESA M. WALKER

The Associated Press

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — The Tennessee Titans are making a change at quarterback in hopes of salvaging their season.

Tennessee will start Ryan Tannehill at quarterback instead of Saint Louis School graduate Marcus Mariota on Sunday against the Los Angeles Chargers, a person familiar with the decision told The Associated Press on Tuesday night. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the team has not announced the change.

Coach Mike Vrabel benched Mariota in the third quarter of a 16-0 loss in Denver, the first time the No. 2 pick overall in the 2015 draft had been pulled from a game for poor play and not because of injury. Vrabel said Monday the Titans (2-4) would decide who would start against the Chargers (2-4) by Tuesday and then tell both quarterbacks and the rest of the team.

Now Tannehill will get his first start since the Titans acquired the veteran in March from Miami through a trade initially designed to improve Tennessee’s backup to Mariota.

“Ryan was an elite quarterback in this league … no longer than a year ago,” Titans tight end Delanie Walker said Monday before the decision was made to start Tannehill. “He can take over a team. He can make plays, control the offense. I mean, I seen him do it in Miami.”

NFL.com first reported the switch at quarterback Tuesday night.

The Titans had made it clear all offseason that Mariota was their starter until the No. 2 pick overall in the 2015 draft turned in his worst performance in Denver. Mariota was 7 of 18 for 63 yards and was intercepted twice for his first turnovers of the season. He also was sacked three times.

Mariota went into that game as the NFL’s only quarterback without a turnover, but his interception-free streak ended late in the first half at 205 straight passes when Chris Harris picked him off. Mariota is being paid $20.9 million under the fifth-year option of his rookie contract, and he has a 91.7 passer rating with seven touchdown passes and the two picks.

Tannehill was 13 of 16 for 144 yards while being sacked four times after coming off the bench for the second time this season. He also played at the end of a season-opening rout in Cleveland. He started 88 games in Miami, including 11 last season.

This is the eighth NFL season for Tannehill, who has a career quarterback rating of 62.9, having thrown for 20,578 yards with 123 touchdowns and 76 interceptions. The eighth overall pick out of Texas A&M in 2012, Tannehill is being paid $1.75 million under a one-year deal.

The Titans hope Tannehill jump-starts an offense that has scored 98 points all season, including one touchdown over its past 10 quarters. Tennessee has lost four of five.

Titans coach deciding whether to bench Mariota for Tannehill

By TERESA M. WALKER

The Associated Press

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Tennessee coach Mike Vrabel is taking some time before deciding if Marcus Mariota remains his starter or the time has arrived to turn the Titans over to backup quarterback Ryan Tannehill.

This isn’t a decision the second-year head coach wants to rush, even though he plans to tell both quarterbacks and the Titans some time today.

“I just want to make sure that we’re going through everything that we need to go through and what we want to do offensively, not use the emotion of the game to make a decision,” Vrabel said Monday.

Vrabel benched Mariota in the third quarter of a 16-0 loss in Denver, the first time the Saint Louis School graduate had been pulled because of his play. Mariota was 7 of 18 for 63 yards, sacked three times and intercepted twice — his first turnovers of the season.

Mariota is being paid $20.9 million in the final year of his rookie contract, but the Titans’ offense has managed just one touchdown in the past 10 quarters. The Chargers (2-4) visit on Sunday.

“We’re 2-4, we’re coming back home,” Vrabel said. “We have to find a way to win a football game.”

Three-time Pro Bowl tight end Delanie Walker said the coaches will do what they feel is best for the Titans. Asked about Tannehill, Walker said he was an elite quarterback in the NFL a year ago in Miami. Against Denver, Tannehill was 13 of 16 for 144 yards and was sacked four times.

“I don’t know what the situation is going to be, but soon enough we’ll all find out,” Walker said.

Mariota’s starting spot in flux after benching vs. Broncos

By PAT GRAHAM

The Associated Press

DENVER — Marcus Mariota was blasted, baffled and finally benched.

Now, his starting spot is in limbo.

The Tennessee Titans quarterback got the hook in the third quarter for his ragged play during a 16-0 loss to the Denver Broncos on Sunday. Backup Ryan Tannehill took over in the game — and perhaps going forward.

Not that Titans coach Mike Vrabel was willing to address that in the aftermath of a game in which his offense had nearly as many punts (nine) as first downs (12).

“I’ll let you know as soon as I figure it out,” Vrabel said.

It was a confounding afternoon for Mariota, whose stat line wasn’t pretty: 7 of 18 for 63 yards passing. A 9.5 passer rating. Two picks. Sacked three times.

“I didn’t give our guys a chance to make plays,” said Mariota, the graduate of Saint Louis School who was the No. 2 pick overall in the 2015 draft. “Obviously, that’s some of the reasons why I got pulled.”

Tannehill took over with 4:56 left in the third and the Titans trailing 13-0. They were searching for some sort of spark from Tannehill, who was acquired in a trade with Miami in March as an insurance policy in case Mariota got hurt again.

The veteran Tannehill only produced two first downs until his final drive. He finished 13 of 16 for 144 yards and one interception. He was sacked four times as the Broncos completed their first shutout since December 2017.

“I just wasn’t good enough,” Tannehill said. “We have to be better all the way around, and I have to be better.”

With Mariota running the show, the Titans (2-4) managed just six first downs and 88 total yards. A week earlier, they scored just once in a loss to Buffalo.

“We’re not pulling our weight as an offense,” Mariota said. “We have to find a way to improve and change that because our defense is playing lights out.”

Vrabel said Mariota wasn’t happy about the benching, but “he took it like a pro. … I don’t think any of us were happy. When we lose, nobody’s happy.”

Mariota offered Tannehill some advice before he stepped in.

“Trust what you see and go play,” Mariota recounted.

So that’s what the former Dolphins starter tried to do. But that’s a difficult task against Von Miller and Co., who earned their first shutout in two years.

“I thought the ball was coming out good. I felt my locations were good,” Tannehill said. “Definitely felt like it had been a while since I’d played. But I thought I was able to settle in and find some open guys.”

Tannehill said he’s spoken with Mariota and there’s nothing but mutual respect.

“We have a great relationship,” Tannehill said. “These things are tough no matter how you cut it. I think the only thing that makes it somewhat tolerable is that we do have a good relationship and we have a ton of respect for each other.”

Asked if he was hoping this was a one-week deal and he’d be in there against the Los Angeles Chargers next week, Mariota said: “For me as a competitor, I would love to be out there with my guys. But again it’s going to come down to the coaches and what they decide.”

Pressed if this was his team, Mariota responded: “Absolutely. Absolutely. No matter what, I’m a team player. If they call my number, I’ll be ready to go and I’ll make the most of the opportunity.”

Despite loss of QB, Boise State handles UH 59-37

By JASON CHATRAW

The Associated Press
BOISE, Idaho — After holding a competitive contest for the starting quarterback job, Boise State coach Bryan Harsin has insisted that the Broncos are well stocked at the position.
Saturday night against the University of Hawaii and its high-powered offense, Harsin’s message was put to the test. Turns out, he was right.
Chase Cord threw for 175 yards and three touchdowns in relief of injured starter Hank Bachmeier and No. 14 Boise State beat UH 59-37.
The Broncos (6-0, 3-0 Mountain West) remained perfect at home against the Rainbow Warriors in seven meetings, despite losing Bachmeier early in the second quarter when he was scrambling for a first down and spun to elude oncoming linebacker Kana‘i Picanco.
Bachmeier absorbed a hit in his lower back and promptly fumbled. He walked gingerly off the field with the aid of staff trainers before going to the locker room. In the second half, he returned to the sidelines in street clothes.
“(Hank’s injury) was something along the lines of a hip pointer,” Harsin said after the game. “He got hit in the side and was out, and he was not going to go back in. At that point we decided to just roll with Chase. He was already in the game plan with some packages. So we decided to give Hank a chance to rest up a bit. He’s going to be fine moving forward.”
With Bachmeier out, Cord ensured that the Broncos’ passing offense that ranks second in the conference didn’t miss a beat, throwing TD strikes of 33, 42, and 8 yards and finishing 12-for-18 passing.
Hawaii (4-2, 1-1), which entered the game with the Mountain West’s top passing offense and fourth nationally, fell behind early and never seemed to have an answer defensively for any of the three quarterbacks Boise State played.
“The defense played well in the first half but awful field position,” UH coach Nick Rolovich said. “We gave them some real short plays and they took advantage of it. Our defense didn’t play nearly as poorly as the score indicated, but in the second half we gave up some really big plays that we uncharacteristic for us.”
Hawaii quarterback Cole McDonald threw for 251 yards and three touchdowns, moving past Garrett Gabriel for fifth place on the school’s career passing yardage list.
Rainbow Warriors wide receiver Melquise Stovall finished with eight catches for 114 yards and two TDs.
UH hosts Air Force next Saturday, with kickoff set for 5 p.m.
Hawaii 7 7 7 16—37
Boise St. 14 17 21 7—59
First Quarter
BOISE—Shakir 5 run (Sachse kick), 11:59
BOISE—Hightower 26 pass from Bachmeier (Sachse kick), 8:20
HAW—Victor 17 pass from McDonald (Meskell kick), 7:23
Second Quarter
BOISE—FG Sachse 38, 13:46
BOISE—Shakir 33 pass from Cord (Sachse kick), 5:52
BOISE—Mahone 13 run (Sachse kick), 2:26
HAW—Stovall 21 pass from McDonald (Meskell kick), :41
Third Quarter
BOISE—Hightower 42 pass from Cord (Sachse kick), 12:30
BOISE—Holani 25 pass from Henderson (Sachse kick), 8:24
HAW—McDonald 17 run (Meskell kick), 3:31
BOISE—Holani 8 pass from Cord (Sachse kick), :00
Fourth Quarter
HAW—Stovall 3 pass from McDonald (McDonald run), 10:37
HAW—Mardner 50 pass from Cordeiro (Stovall run), 2:44
BOISE—Holani 40 run (Sachse kick), 1:49
A—36,902.
HAWBOISE
First downs 24 29
Rushes-yards 19-113 39-203
Passing 325 315
Comp-Att-Int 26-50-1 21-37-0
Return Yards 136 38
Punts-Avg. 4-36.25 3-35.33
Fumbles-Lost 3-3 1-1
Penalties-Yards 10-88 11-95
Time of Possession 27:18 32:42
INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS
RUSHING—Hawaii, McDonald 8-54, Keliiliki 3-27, Holly 4-24, Picanco 1-9, Cordeiro 0-0, Mi.Reed 3-(minus 1). Boise St., Mahone 16-74, Holani 9-64, Bachmeier 3-28, Cord 4-13, Henderson 3-9, Hightower 2-8, Shakir 1-5, Van Buren 1-2.
PASSING—Hawaii, Cordeiro 3-9-1-74, McDonald 23-41-0-251. Boise St., Bachmeier 3-9-0-58, Cord 12-18-0-175, Henderson 6-10-0-82.
RECEIVING—Hawaii, Stovall 8-114, Byrd 6-74, Victor 4-33, Sharsh 4-29, Smart 3-25, Mardner 1-50. Boise St., Hightower 7-141, C.Thomas 4-53, Shakir 3-57, Holani 3-38, Bates 1-12, Pistone 1-7, Mahone 1-5, Butler 1-2.
MISSED FIELD GOALS—None.

Cardinals score 10 runs in first, eliminate Braves 13-1

By PAUL NEWBERRY

The Associated Press

ATLANTA — The St. Louis Cardinals turned the diamond into a giant pinball machine, dinging hits all over SunTrust Park.

By the time the Atlanta Braves finally got the third out, it was the most productive first inning in postseason history.

The Cardinals scored 10 runs their first time up and dealt Atlanta another playoff heartbreak, routing the Braves 13-1 in the decisive Game 5 of the National League Division Series on Wednesday.

“That was crazy,” said Marcell Ozuna, one of five players who batted twice in the stunning outburst. “We got a good opportunity — and we took it.”

Before many fans had reached their seats, the Cardinals were already booking their plans for the NL Championship Series, where they will play the Washington Nationals in a best-of-seven set beginning Friday in St. Louis.

It will be St. Louis’ first NLCS trip since 2014.

“We know we can beat anyone at this point,” Hilo’s Kolten Wong said.

For the Braves, it might take a while to get over this debacle.

After pitching seven scoreless innings in a Game 2 win, Mike Foltynewicz retired only one hitter before getting yanked. First baseman Freddie Freeman booted a potential double-play ball that might have limited the damage. The Cardinals scored their final run of the inning on a strikeout — a wild pitch in the dirt that skipped away from catcher Brian McCann.

“We just strung together a bunch of great at-bats,” said Wong, who hit a two-run double in the first and scored on that wild pitch.

Tommy Edman and Dexter Fowler also had two-run doubles as St. Louis equaled the highest-scoring inning in postseason history. No team had ever scored 10 runs in the very first inning of a postseason game.

The Cardinals made several changes after their 10-spot — no need to worry about any more offense with budding ace Jack Flaherty on the mound, coming off one of the great second halves by a starting pitcher in baseball history.

Manager Mike Shildt let the 23-year-old Flaherty throw 104 pitches over six innings, surrendering four hits for the first postseason win of his blossoming career.

It was Atlanta’s 10th straight postseason round loss since its last victory 18 long years ago, tying the ignominious mark set by the Chicago Cubs between 1908 and 2003.

“It was more of a shock than anything,” said Josh Donaldson, whose homer provided the lone Atlanta run. “You don’t expect something like that to happen, especially with how well we played all season.”

After the game, McCann, 35, announced he’s retiring after a 15-year career that included two stints with his hometown Braves.

Mariota leads first-half surge as Titans top Falcons

By CHARLES ODUM

The Associated Press

ATLANTA — Marcus Mariota and the Tennessee Titans enjoyed a surge in confidence after returning to .500 and a share of the AFC South lead.

For Matt Ryan and the Atlanta Falcons, there is only frustration and despair at the bottom of the NFC South.

Mariota threw three first-half touchdown passes, two to A.J. Brown, and the Titans defense had three fourth-down stops to beat the Falcons 24-10 on Sunday.

Tennessee (2-2) used Mariota’s big first half and strong defense to snap a two-game losing streak.

“If we can continue to get better and ascend, we’ll like where we are at the end of the year,” Mariota said after completing 18 of 27 passes for 227 yards. The Saint Louis School alum still has not thrown an interception this season.

Derrick Henry ran for 100 yards to keep Tennessee’s offense balanced.

The Falcons, held to only a field goal in the second half, were unable to maintain drives despite Ryan’s 397 yards passing.

Ito Smith’s 1-yard touchdown run in the first quarter pulled the Falcons (1-3) even at 7-7. Tennessee outscored Atlanta 17-0 the remainder of the half, and the Falcons heard boos as they left the field.

“We’re a quarter way through the season and we have not played to our standard, that’s for sure,” Ryan said.

It was a disappointing loss for Falcons coach Dan Quinn, who is under pressure following a 7-9 finish in 2018.

“It is a tough loss, and we’re as disappointed as our fans are,” Quinn said.

“You better believe we’re going to look at everything. When you’re sitting at 1-3, you want to make sure you’re finding the answers.”

The Falcons were stopped on three fourth-down plays.

Devonta Freeman, who was held to 28 yards on 12 carries, was stopped by Jurrell Casey on a fourth-and-1 run in the second quarter. Ryan was sacked on two fourth-down plays in the second half.

“Those are like turnovers, especially when they’re behind,” said Titans coach Mike Vrabel. “They were going to be going for it and they were aggressive. I thought our guys responded really well.”

Mariota faced growing criticism after managing only one touchdown pass in two straight losses.

Mariota enjoyed a resurgence against the Falcons. He connected with Brown for a 55-yard touchdown pass on Tennessee’s second possession. Brown beat Desmond Trufant and then outran Kemal Ishmael and Deion Jones.

Brown beat Trufant again for an 11-yard scoring catch in the first quarter. Mariota’s 23-yard touchdown pass to Corey Davis late in the half followed the fourth-and-1 stop by Casey on Freeman’s run.

With the game tied at 7, Mariota completed a third-and-15 pass over the middle to Corey Davis for 16 yards. The play kept the drive alive that finished with Brown’s second scoring catch, giving the Titans the lead they would never lose.

“It was a huge momentum shift and something that really got us going,” Mariota said.

The Falcons, who trailed 24-7 at halftime, have been outscored 65-10 in the first half of their three losses.

“I wish I had a clear answer to that, but the fact is that’s the truth,” Quinn said. “… I addressed that last week, but we obviously still have work to do.”

Rainbow Warriors destroy Wolf Pack

RENO, Nev. (AP) — Cole McDonald threw four touchdown passes, including three to Cedric Byrd II, and the University of Hawaii football team beat Nevada 54-3 on Saturday night in the Mountain West Conference opener for both teams.
McDonald completed 25 of 30 passes for 312 yards and Byrd had seven receptions for 87 yards. Jason-Matthew Sharsh had nine catches for 123 yards — both career highs — and a score for the Rainbow Warriors (4-1).
UH got off to a fast start and didn’t let up.
Byrd had TD receptions of 36 and 2 yards, Justice Augafa returned a punt blocked by Andrew Choi 2 yards for a score and Miles Reed scored on a 9-yard run to make it 28-0 with 5:33 left in the second quarter. After Brandon Talton’s 36-yard field goal got Nevada (3-2) on the board with 36 seconds left in the first half, Byrd ran 29 yards on a trick play and then had a 7-yard reception to set up a 44-yard field goal Ryan Meskell to give the Rainbow Warriors a 28-point halftime lead.
Hawaii continued to pour it on in the second half. Sharsh caught a 12-yard TD pass on the Rainbow Warriors’ first possession of the third quarter, and Byrd hauled in a 20-yard scoring strike with 2:57 left in the quarter.
UH got a safety early in the fourth on a botched punt snap by Nevada. With the back-ups in, third-string quarterback Justin Uahinui hit Robert Funkhouser for a 14-yard score with 3:42 remaining.
The Rainbow Warriors posted 512 yards of offense while holding Nevada to 203. For the first time this season, UH won the turnover battle, 2-0.
Hawaii, which had lost seven of its last eight against the Wolf Pack, won at Nevada for just the second time in 10 all-time tries. It was the second-highest margin of victory in series history; the Rainbow Warriors lost 73-12 in Honolulu on Dec. 17, 1948.
After a bye week, UH travels to the blue turf in Boise, Idaho, to take on 16th-ranked Boise State on Oct. 12.
Hawaii 7 24 14 9—54
Nevada 0 3 0 0—  3
First Quarter
HAW—Byrd 36 pass from McDonald (Meskell kick), 8:17
Second Quarter
HAW—Byrd 2 pass from McDonald (Meskell kick), 10:40
HAW—Augafa 2 blocked punt return (Meskell kick), 9:11
HAW—Reed 9 run (Meskell kick), 5:33
NEV—FG Talton 36, :36
HAW—FG Meskell 44, :02
Third Quarter
HAW—Sharsh 12 pass from McDonald (Meskell kick), 11:03
HAW—Byrd 20 pass from McDonald (Meskell kick), 2:57
Fourth Quarter
HAW—safety, 9:20
HAW—Funkhouser 14 pass from Uahinui (Meskell kick), 3:42
A—15,137.
HAWNEV
First downs 26 16
Rushes-yards 27-139 36-98
Passing 373 105
Comp-Att-Int 31-36-0 18-31-2
Return Yards 71 87
Punts-Avg. 2-36.0 4-26.6
Fumbles-Lost 0-0 2-1
Penalties-Yards 6-70 10-78
Time of Possession 31:12 28:48
INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS
RUSHING—Hawaii, Holly 11-63, Byrd 1-29, Keliiliki 5-26, Reed 6-26, McDonald 3-1, Cordeiro 1-(minus 6). Nevada, Taua 17-72, Solano 10-32, K.Moore 1-5, D.Lee 1-4, Neal 6-3, Edwards 0-0, (Team) 1-(minus 18).
PASSING—Hawaii, Uahinui 1-1-0-14, Cordeiro 5-5-0-47, McDonald 25-30-0-312. Nevada, Solano 11-17-1-59, Strong 7-14-1-46.
RECEIVING—Hawaii, Sharsh 9-123, Byrd 7-87, Ward 5-68, Funkhouser 4-36, Smart 3-28, Ealy 1-19, Reed 1-6, J.Johnson 1-6. Nevada, Cooks 5-38, Christian 3-6, Doubs 2-25, K.Moore 2-(minus 3), Humphrey 1-18, Neal 1-8, Lappin 1-5, Melqua.Stovall 1-5, Putman 1-3, Fossum 1-0.
MISSED FIELD GOALS—None.