Utah State football: Punting game a key factor in Aggies' win over Colorado State
Logan • It's not often said that a game was "won by a punt." But junior Jaron Bentrude picked a good time to have one of his best games, and it was certainly a big factor in Utah State's 13-0 win on Saturday afternoon.
Bentrude kicked a career-best eight punts inside the 20 yard line, pinning Colorado State against their own end zone and helping set the table for the Aggies' first shut out since 2003. The Rams didn't start a drive any closer than their own 25, and started three inside their own 10 thanks to Bentrude's foot.
The performance was particularly impressive in light of a unpredictably gusty day. Coach Matt Wells lauded Bentrude's performance afterward, calling it the "hidden yardage" of the game.
DeMartino over the career millenium mark
Senior running back Joey DeMartino, carrying the offense on his shoulders particularly in the first half, managed to cross a career milestone that didn't seem likely at the start of the season.
With a carry down near Colorado State's seven yard line, DeMartino became the 26th Aggie to rush for more than 1,000 yards in his career. DeMartino also inched closer to the millenial mark for this season with his 5th game over 100 rushing yards this year.
A lightly used backup for most of his years, DeMartino entered the season with just 154 yards. He was considered the second-string back for the season's early games, but assumed starting duties officially after Joe Hill suffered a season-ending ACL tear.
Touchdown-less half a rarity for Utah State
Just how rarely does Utah State go without a touchdown in the first half?
When the Aggies finished the second quarter with a 3-0 lead on against Colorado State, it was the first time the program didn't reach the end zone in the opening half since 2011. Utah State had scored first-half touchdowns in the 19 games since.
Colorado State's defense did a number on the Aggies' attack, but Utah State's defense found success. Holding the Rams scoreless, the Aggies held an opponent to a goose egg in the opening half only the second time this season.