LOGAN, Utah (ABC4 Sports) – Gary Andersen’s first game back at Maverik Stadium since his return to Utah State last December was a memorable one.
Sophomore wide receiver Deven Thompkins, just days after his wife gave birth to their second child, a son, scored a pair of touchdowns, and junior running back Jaylen Warren reached the century mark for the second-consecutive game, as Utah State rolled to a 62-7 non-conference victory over Stony Brook on Saturday night.
Utah State racked up 717 yards of total offense.
“It’s great to win,” said Andersen, who improved to 17-7 at home as the Aggies’ head coach, including winning nine straight. “It was a team effort in all three phases and everyone contributed. It was good to get some young players in there as we went through the game in the second half. Winning is an awesome feeling. These kids deserved it and they fought hard. I’m proud of the kids. It was a great victory, and it’s great to be back in that stadium.”
Junior quarterback Jordan Love passed for 294 yards and one touchdown in just over two quarters for the Aggies (1-1, 0-0 Mountain West), who racked up 717 yards of total offense – the second-most in school history – and a program-best 35 first downs.
Utah State led 34-0 at intermission after scoring on six of its eight first-half drives. The Aggies opened the game’s scoring on a 35-yard field goal by senior placekicker Dominik Eberle that barely made it over the crossbar after being partially blocked.
After punting the second time they touched the ball, the Aggies proceeded to score on their next five possessions, beginning with a 45-yard punt return for a touchdown by Thompkins. He also hauled in a 10-yard touchdown pass in the fourth quarter from sophomore backup quarterback Henry Colombi that gave Utah State its final margin of victory.
“I felt like our offense played the game we were supposed to play,” said Thompkins, who finished with five catches for 77 yards. “We played to our tempo. We left a couple of touchdowns out there, but that’s just part of the game. We played to our full potential tonight, and that’s what I like to see. I love my offense and my quarterback and the receivers we have. We just make a lot of plays.”
Warren ran for 105 yards and two touchdowns, a 28-yarder and a 54-yarder. Utah State, which gained 325 yards on the ground, also had touchdown runs from senior running back Gerold Bright and redshirt freshman backup quarterback Andrew Peasley.
In his backup role, Colombi completed 8 of 9 passes for 93 yards and two touchdowns, including a 30-yarder to junior wide receiver Derek Wright that stretched the Aggies’ lead to 48-7 late in the third quarter.
Grad transfers Siaosi Mariner and Caleb Repp also had five catches apiece for 73 and 58 yards, respectively, for Utah State. Mariner found paydirt on a 29-yard pass from Love with 3:27 remaining in the first quarter.
Stony Brook was held to 263 total yards and 16 first downs. Quarterback Jack Cassidy was 14 for 28 for 129 yards and one touchdown, to go along with an interception, for the Seawolves (1-1, 0-0 Colonial Athletic Association).
Junior safety Cash Gilliam led the Aggies with six tackles and a forced fumble, while senior cornerback DJ Williams had four tackles and a career-high-tying three pass breakups. Sophomore cornerback Andre Grayson recorded Utah State’s lone turnover of the night with an interception.
“I thought we did a great job at the start of the game, getting three-and-outs and stopping the run,” said junior linebacker David Woodward, who had four tackles. “That was a big emphasis for the game, and we did a good job of that.”
Utah State now has a bye week before hitting the road for its Mountain West Conference opener at San Diego State September 21st.