Nevada is out of options.
After falling 35-26 at New Mexico (6-3, 4-1) on Saturday night, its fifth loss in six games, the Wolf Pack (3-6, 1-4) must now win its final three games to become eligible for the 11th time in 12 seasons.
Ty Gangi started his first career game behind center for the Pack and threw for 300 yards for the second straight game. He also broke the threshold off the bench against Wyoming two weeks ago.
Gangi completed 19-of-34 passes for 301 yards and three touchdowns. He did throw two interceptions and now has three on the year. Two have come in the fourth quarter on desperation drives.
New Mexico’s nation-leading rushing attack went for 373 yards – 16 yards more than its per game average.
Nevada finished with just 108 yards on the ground.
The Wolf Pack trailed 28-14 going into the fourth quarter. Tight end Brandon Scott hauled in a 19-yard touchdown pass from Gangi, the first of his career, but a blocked PAT left the guests down eight. A false start on kicker Spencer Petit moved the kick back five yards, where it was blocked.
The defense forced a quick three-and-out and Gangi hit Ahki Muhammad running free across the middle of the field for a 59-yard touchdown, the first of Muhammad’s career. The two-point try failed, leaving Nevada down 28-26.
The Lobos added an eight-play 57-yard touchdown drive that put the game out of reach with 2:54 left.
Nevada returns to Mackay Stadium on Saturday night to play San Diego State (8-1, 5-0). Coach Brian Polian’s squad wraps up the home slate next Saturday against Utah State (3-6, 1-5) then ends the regular season at UNLV (3-6, 2-3).
One loss in the final three will end the Pack’s bowl aspirations.
-With his first catch of the game, senior WR Hasaan Henderson passed Treamelle Taylor for 17th in career receiving yards at Nevada.
-Jerico Richardson extended his streak of consecutive games with a reception to 28.
-Sophomore TE Brandon Scott caught his first career touchdown pass in the fourth quarter from sophomore QB Ty Gangi.
-Sophomore WR Ahki Muhammad also hauled in his first career touchdown reception on a career-long 57-yard play in the fourth quarter.
-Junior WR Wyatt Demps brought in his seventh receiving touchdown of the season in the second quarter.
-Gangi threw three touchdown passes, the first game of his career throwing multiple touchdown passes. He is the first to throw for three touchdowns in a game since Tyler Stewart did against San Jose State last season.
– Gangi finished with a career-high 301 passing yards. He is the first Nevada quarterback to throw for 300 yards in back-to-back games since Cody Fajardo did so against Air Force and San Diego State in 2013.
-Gangi connected with seven different receivers in the game. It’s the eighth game of the year where at least six receivers have caught a pass.
-In the second quarter redshirt freshman LB Gabe Sewell forced a fumble for the first time in his career. The ball was recovered by junior LB Jaden Sawyer, his first career fumble recovery. That was the Pack’s 14th fumble forced this season, which leads the Mountain West.
-Elijah Mitchell’s interception in the first quarter is his first of the season and the second of his career.
-Senior P Alex Boy eclipsed 7,000 punting yards for his career during the game. He finished with four punts for 165 yards, an average of 41.2 yards per punt.
-The Pack and Lobos were tied at halftime, 14-14. It marked the first time this season Nevada went into halftime tied.
-The game endured a one hour and 49 minute weather delay following halftime.
-Nevada is now 3-3-1 all-time against New Mexico.