Lobos hands first loss to MU

Sunday, September 11, 2005

COLUMBIA, Mo. -- Hank Baskett caught 10 passes for 209 yards and three touchdowns, helping New Mexico pull away in the fourth quarter for a 45-35 victory over Missouri on Saturday night.

Kenny Byrd's 40-yard field goal snapped a fourth-quarter tie and Baskett's 9-yard catch from Kole McKamey with 2:01 clinched it for the Lobos, who scored 17 points in the final quarter and won for the second time this week after beating UNLV on Monday.

They spoiled Missouri's home opener despite a record-breaking day from Brad Smith, and ended a 12-game losing streak against teams from the Big 12 that dated to 1983.

McKamey threw a career-best three touchdown passes and ran for a fourth. He held his own against Smith, who ran for touchdowns of 31 and 15 yards, threw for a third score and broke two school career scoring records.

Smith also had a career-high 29 rushing attempts, but threw two interceptions and lost a fumble that was returned for a touchdown. Gabriel Fulbright had both of the interceptions, including one with 3:15 left that led to Baskett's third touchdown catch.

The game had been tied four times before Byrd's career-long field goal put New Mexico ahead to stay with 4:22 to go. Baskett's touchdown catch came four plays later.

Smith set school career records for yards passing and yards rushing while going 32-for-55 for 248 yards and gaining 165 yards on 29 carries. He already holds records for total offense and passing touchdowns.

New Mexico's pass rush forced a Smith fumble that Evroy Thompson returned 28 yards to put New Mexico ahead 21-14 early in the third quarter. Smith tied it again when he broke three tackles and slipped a fourth on a 31-yard run on the ensuing drive.

Then Smith put Missouri ahead, breaking three more tackles after New Mexico collapsed the pocket on a pass play and scoring on a 15-yard scramble for a 28-21 lead. New Mexico tied it on a 41-yard option pass from DonTrell Moore to Baskett near the end of the third quarter.

The teams traded scores early in the fourth quarter, McKamey getting a 4-yard run for New Mexico and Missouri answering on a 12-yard pass from Smith to Chase Coffman.

Before the game there was a moment of silence to honor Missouri linebacker Aaron O'Neal, who died of viral meningitis in July after a conditioning workout. Players lined up on the 25, O'Neal's jersey number.

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