Open Announce Photo/Marshall Saiz

Lobos Can’t Contain Falcons in 35-3 Loss

by Frank Mercogliano

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — Air Force did what Air Force does, grinding out yards on the ground, scoring on its first two possession to win 35-3 over New Mexico in Colorado Springs.  The win was Air Force’s fifth straight in the series and 10th straight over UNM in Falcon Stadium.

Overall, New Mexico has now lost seven straight games.

The Falcons did what they do, rushing 70 times for 428 yards, and capitalizing twice on pass plays, one for a 33-yard touchdown.  The 428 yards on the ground marked the 15th-most rushing yards ever allowed by UNM in a game.  The Lobos threw for 128 yards, which was more than the last two games combined, but UNM picked up just 172 yards of total offense.

The Falcons opened the scoring on a third-and-four when quarterback Haaziq Daniels faked to his left, stopped and went right, and took advantage of a numbers matchup to go 65 yards for a score and the Falcon grabbed a 7-0 lead just 3:24 into the game.  After a second straight three-and-out by the Lobo offense, the Falcons moved 84 yards in 15 plays, with John Elridge III scoring from 10 yards out to make it 14-0.

After Air Force’s first two scores, UNM didn’t give up a score, getting a pair of stops to go into the half down just 14-0.  UNM held until the third quarter when Air Force completed a 33-yard touchdown pass to from Haaziq Daniels to David Cormier to make it 21-0.  After UNM punted, the Lobos got a turnover as true freshman A.J. Haulcy recovered a fumble that was forced by Jerrick Reed II.  UNM quarterback Justin Holaday hit Geordon Porter down the sideline for 31 yards to the Air Force 15, but UNM couldn’t move further from there, settling for a 39-yard Luke Drzewiecki field goal.

Air Force then bobbled the ensuing kickoff but it was able to recover.  UNM forced another fourth down attempt when the Falcons faced fourth-and3 from the Lobo 37, but Daniels bided his time and scampered 37 yards for a score and a 28-3 lead.  A late score after UNM went for it deep within its own territory accounted for the final margin.

The Lobos had three players record double-digit tackles with Cody Moon getting 14 and Reco Hannah and Dion Hunter getting 12 each.  A.J. Haulcy, whose fumble recovery led to UNM’s lone score, had nine.  Duece Jones led the offense with three catches for 49 yards.

Postgame Notes


This was the 40th meeting between the two teams.


Air Force now leads the series 26-14

Air Force now leads the series 14-2 in Colorado Springs

Air Force leads the series 11-10 in Albuquerque

Series tied 1-1 in Denver

New Mexico leads the series 1-0 in Dallas

Air Force has won five straight in the series and 10 straight in Colorado Springs


Starting lineup changes for UNM from published two-deep

Offense: RB Christian Washington started as a second running back for WR Luke Wysong; WR Duece Jones started for WR Trae Hall.

Defense: Kyler Drake started at end for Ian Shewell; Wolf Jer’Marius Lewis started for Ronald Wilson


*New Mexico’s captains were Reco Hannah, Isaak Gutierrez, Jake Saltonstall and Radson Jang.

*New Mexico’s Bryce Santana carried the state flag of New Mexico onto the field and George Steinkamp carried the United States flag.

*New Mexico won toss and elected to receive. It marked the 27th time in Danny Gonzales’ 29 games that UNM received the opening kickoff.



*New Mexico and Air Force were featured on the 7 am SportsCenter’s “Geared Up” segment.  Air Force wore its “space Force” uniforms, and UNM wore red helmets and pants with white jerseys to compliment the Air Force blue in honor of Veteran’s Day for a red, white and blue motif on the field.

*Air Force’s opening 65-yard touchdown run was the longest rush allowed by UNM this season.

*New Mexico shut out Air Force in the second quarter.  UNM has allowed just three points in the last four second quarters.

*UNM’s field goal in the third quarter was just the second score for UNM in the third quarter in eight FBS games.  UNM did score 13 against Maine in the third quarter of the opener.

*The field goal marked the first time that UNM has scored against Air Force in Falcon Stadium since November 10, 2018 when Jalin Burrell picked up a third quarter fumble in the end zone one play after a school record 85-yard punt by Tyson Dyer pinned the Falcons at the 1-yard line.

*Air Force went 3-for-3 on fourth down, and UNM’s opponents have gone 7-for-7 in the last two games.  UNM’s last fourth down stop was in the third quarter on a fourth-and-six at LSU.  Since then, opponents have converted nine straight.

*Air Force had both Haaziq Daniels and Brad Roberts go over the 100-yard mark.  It was the first time an opponent had two 100-yard rushers since Xavian Halladay and Sean Chambers both did it for Wyoming on October 19, 2019, a 23-10 Cowboy win.




*Duece Jones had his first multi-catch game of his career, finishing with three catches.

*Air Force’s only attempted pass in the first half ended up as a sack by Jake Saltonstall.

*Geordon Porter’s first half reception was his first since he had six against UNLV on September 30 in game five of the season.

*The third quarter forced fumble by Jerrick Reed II was his second of the season.  The recovery by A.J. Haulcy was the first of his career and his team-leading third takeaway.

*Justin Holaday’s 31-yard completion to Geordon Porter was the longest pass of his career.

*Luke Drzewiecki hit a 39-yard field goal and has now hit his last eight field goals from inside 50 yards.

*Cody Moon’s 14 tackles were a career-high as were Reco Hannah’s 12 tackles.

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