EL PASO, Texas, Sept. 13 -- Reginal Johnson led a punishing ground attack with 103 yards and a touchdown as New Mexico defeated Texas-El Paso, 38-20, to win their Western Athletic Conference opener for the first time in seven years. New Mexico (3-0), rushed for 360 yards while holding the Miners to just 22 yards on the ground.
Chris Shelton rushed for 74 yards and a touchdown and Dion Marion added 60 yards and two scores. Graham Leigh completed 11-of-19 passes for New Mexico and rushed for 73 yards, helping the Lobos roll up 498 yards of total offense. John Rayburn completed just 8-of-22 passes for 188 yards, but threw for two touchdowns in the first quarter, including a 38-yard strike to Keonta Golson that gave UTEP a 14-7 lead with 2:41 left. But New Mexico responded with 31 unanswered points and took a 38-14 lead on Marion's 10-yard touchdown run with 8:56 remaining in the fourth quarter. The Lobos grabbed a 21-14 halftime lead by scoring twice in an 85- second span late in the second quarter. Leigh's seven-yard scoring toss to Tommy Hemphill tied the game before Marion's 16-yard run put New Mexico ahead for good 64 seconds before halftime.