Jamie Newman threw a 2-yard pass to Kendall Hinton on fourth-and-goal with 1:08 remaining as Wake Forest pulled out a 38-35 victory against visiting Utah State in Friday night’s season opener in Winston-Salem, N.C.
Ahead of the winning drive, the Demon Deacons used up their timeouts on defense, regaining possession with 2:19 to play at their own 11-yard line. A 70-yard connection from Newman to Sage Surratt came on the second play of the possession, putting the ball at the Utah State 1-yard line.
Three rushing attempts were snuffed out before the decisive pass play. With that catch, Hinton became the first Wake Forest player in school history to score in five seasons.
Utah State reached the Wake Forest 31 on its final possession before linebacker Justin Strnad’s interception of Jordan Love.
Until the winning touchdown, the Aggies held Wake Forest scoreless in the fourth quarter.
The game marked the return of Utah State coach Gary Andersen, who left the program after a four-year stint ended in 2012.
Newman threw three touchdown passes and rushed for a score. He racked up 401 passing yards, completing 34 of 47 attempts.
Demon Deacons running back Cade Carney rushed for 105 yards on 25 carries.
Wake Forest has won its past 10 home openers.
Love completed 33 of 48 passes for 416 yards for three touchdowns, but he was intercepted three times.
Love threw 27 yards to Jordan Nathan, 17 yards to Siaosi Mariner and 57 yards to Deven Thompkins for Utah State points.
Aggies running back Jaylen Warren racked up 141 yards and a TD on 19 carries.
Christian Beal-Smith ran 12 yards for a touchdown to put Wake Forest ahead 31-28 in the final minute of the third quarter.
The Aggies were back on top after Warren’s 4-yard run with 13:51 to go in the game.
Earlier, Newman threw a 22-yard touchdown pass to Surratt to cap the game’s opening possession, with the Demon Deacons needing eight plays to go 75 yards.
Gerold Bright ran for a 7-yard touchdown on Utah State’s first drive.
Newman, who was 3-1 as a starter to end the 2018 season, was dubbed the starter during the preseason. He was in a competition with Sam Hartman, who was the starter for the first eight games last year.
—Field Level Media