SAN DIEGO — The Sacramento State football team led FBS San Diego State for most of the fourth quarter before seeing the Aztecs rally for 15 points and a 28-14 victory on Saturday at SDCCU Stadium.
The Hornets trailed 10-0 early in the second quarter before jumping on the board behind a 1-yard rush from Bryant Perkinson. The team took its first lead of the game midway through the third quarter when Perkinson hauled in a 64-yard pass from Kevin Thomson to give the team a 14-13 lead.
The lead held until late in the fourth quarter when Juwan Washington scored from the 4-yard line and SDSU added a two-point conversion to take a 21-14 lead. Chasing a game-tying score, Sacramento State elected to go for it on fourth down deep in its own territory on the ensuing drive. Thomson was sacked and San Diego State took advantage of the field position, scoring two players later on Washington's third touchdown of the game.
The Hornet defense provided constant pressure, recording eight tackles for loss and a pair of sacks. Caelan Barnes and Elijah Wallace tied for the team lead with nine total tackles while Immanuel Anderson and Kevin McKinney added seven. Wallace led all players with 2.5 TFLs and sophomore Mister Harriel had a pair of interceptions.
Elijah Dotson had a team-high 37 yards rush as the Hornets were limited to only 53 rushing yards as a team. Perkinson had 80 receiving yards to lead the squad on a pair of catches. Overall, seven players caught passes with tight end John McGill grabbing three passes.
Thomson completed 11-of-18 passes for 177 yards and also rushed for eight yards.
Washington accounted for the majority of the Aztec offense. A week after rushing for over 100 yards against Stanford, Washington had 156 yards on 36 carries.
Sacramento State will continue its three-week road trip by playing at Northern Colorado on Sept. 15. The game will be a non-conference matchup between a pair of Big Sky schools and will not count toward the conference standings.
Head Coach Jody Sears on the team's performance
"I thought the kids played their hearts out. We were really worried about that running back and we did a good job. They were a little bigger and stronger than we were but I really loved the way we came out and played hard. They weren't awe struck and intimidated."
On the defense's play
"They played with great physicality but San Diego State wore us down toward the end. I decided to go for it late in the game and that put the defense in a tough spot."
5:42 - After Sacramento State had a 48-yard field goal attempt miss off the left upright, the Aztecs scored the first points of the game with a 9-play, 69-yard drive. Elijah Chambers had a 10-yard sack early in the drive but Washington gained 30 yards on 2nd-and-26 to move the chains. He then cut back around the left tackle for the touchdown.
13:33 - San Diego State added to its lead with a 52-yard field goal from John Baron. The Hornet defense limited the Aztecs to just one yard during the drive resulting in the field goal try which a career long by Baron.
6:07 - Sacramento State answered with a methodical 14-play, 75-yard drive for a touchdown which ate up 7:26 off the game clock. The Hornets converted four third downs during the series, including a 29-yard pass to Jaelin Ratliff which placed the ball at the Aztec 2. After two short gains, Bryant Perkinson followed the left side of the line into the end zone for his first score of the year.
0:55 - San Diego closed the first half scoring with a 32-yard field goal from Baron. The key play during the drive came on an incomplete pass down the middle of the field. Aztec quarterback Christian Chapman was injured on a hit to his lower leg and was forced out of the game. Backup Ryan Agnew came on and picked up a first down on a 14-yard scramble later in the series.
8:54 - The Hornets took their first lead of the game on a 64-yard pass from Kevin Thomson to Perkinson. On the play, Thomson stepped into the pocket and then found Perkinson running open in the middle of the field near the 10-yard line. The running back was able to run past the remaining two defenders for his second touchdown of the game.
4:05 - Juwan Washington swung the lead back to the Aztecs with his second TD of the game. The back went over the century marks during the series and scored from 4-yards out. Sacramento State had slowed SDSU during the series but the team converted a 4th-and-9 to take the ball to the Hornet 9 yard line. San Diego State also converted the two-point conversion to make the score 21-14.
2:08 - Washington completed the hat trick nearly two minutes later. The Aztecs sacked Thomson on fourth down and took over at the Sacramento State 25-yard line. Washington covered all 25 yards on two carries, including a 20-yard rush up the middle for the score.
Sacramento State extended its streak with at least two sacks in a game to 13 games. Both sacks on Saturday night came from sophomore Elijah Chambers in the first quarter. Chambers did not have a sack last season but leads the team with three through two games in 2018…Harriel had two interceptions for the first time in his career…it was also the first time a Sacramento State player had multiple interceptions since Dre Terrell had three against Incarnate Word last season…Devon Medeiros' 48-yard miss off the left upright snapped his streak of consecutive makes at seven…Elijah Dotson's 16-yard rush in the first quarter was two yards further than the best rush from Heisman hopeful Bryce Love had against the Aztecs the week prior.