August 31, 2019 / 6:34 AM / 23 days ago

Colorado's big offense, forced turnovers beat CSU

EditorsNote: adds “(19)” in third graf

Aug 30, 2019; Denver, CO, USA; Colorado Buffaloes and a Colorado State Rams fan before the game at Broncos Stadium at Mile High. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Alex Fontenot rushed for 127 yards and three touchdowns, and the Colorado defense forced four turnovers in a 52-31 win over rival Colorado State on Friday night in Denver.

The Buffaloes (1-0) scored touchdowns on four of five possessions spanning the late second quarter into the fourth quarter. Colorado went on a 21-3 tear in that stretch to erase a 21-17 deficit late in the first half.

Fontenot, a sophomore running back, earned his first career start after playing sparingly in 2018. He paced Colorado’s second-half deluge, registering each of his touchdowns after intermission. Fontenot’s yardage, scoring and carries (19) all surpassed his freshman numbers, when he gained 43 yards on just 11 carries with one score.

Meanwhile, last season’s breakout Buffs star, wide receiver Laviska Shenault Jr., picked up yards at a pace similar to 2018 before turf toe limited him down the stretch. Shenault rushed for 35 yards on three carries, including a critical fourth-down conversion off a jet sweep.

Shenault caught three passes for 48 yards, 25 of which came on a spectacular, diving catch touchdown along the sideline just before halftime.

Quarterback Steven Montez threw two touchdowns for Colorado, the other to Jalen Harris. Montez finished 13 for 20 for 232 yards passing with 39 yards on five carries.

Shenault’s score gave Colorado a lead it never relinquished, though Colorado State remained in striking distance until the final minutes. Quarterback Collin Hill completed 31 of 47 pass attempts for 374 yards with three touchdowns, each to a different receiver. Warren Jackson, Dante Wright and Cameron Butler reached scored on pass plays for Colorado State, and Wright also rushed for a score.

The Rams (0-1) rolled offensively in the first half with touchdowns on three of their first four possessions, before turnovers became their undoing.

Colorado defensive back Mikial Onu picked Hill off twice, the first coming in the end zone to deny Colorado State a score that would have put the Rams ahead by a touchdown early.

Colorado State coughed up a fumble on its first possession after halftime, and Buffaloes defensive end Mustafa Johnson closed the night with a 9-yard scoop-and-score.

—Field Level Media

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