Arizona tops Nevada in New Mexico Bowl

Updated 16 December 2012
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Arizona tops Nevada in New Mexico Bowl

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M: Matt Scott threw two short touchdown passes in the final 46 seconds and college football’s postseason started with a wild one when Arizona rallied past Nevada 49-48 Saturday night in the New Mexico Bowl.
Overcoming a slow start and three big turnovers, Arizona (8-5) recovered an onside kick in the last minute, setting up Scott’s 2-yard toss to Tyler Slavin with 19 seconds left for the winning score.
Arizona trailed 21-0 in the first quarter and was down 45-28 entering the final period. Scott threw for 382 yards and marched his team back into the game despite two earlier interceptions.
The nation’s rushing leader, Ka’Deem Carey, gained 172 yards for the Wildcats and but fell short of becoming only the 16th running back in NCAA history to reach 2,000 yards in a season.
The teams combined for 1,237 total yards, the second most of any bowl game.
Cody Fajardo threw for three touchdowns and ran for another score to lead the Wolf Pack (7-6). He had 256 yards passing and 140 yards rushing and controlled most of the game, completing 22 of 32 throws.
Stefphon Jefferson, the nation’s second-leading rusher, ran for 180 yards for Nevada and also seemed unstoppable as the Wolf Pack took a big lead and held on to it for most of the game.
But after forcing Nevada to kick a field goal with 1:48 left that made it 48-35, Scott drove the Wildcats 75 yards. Arizona then recovered an onside kick and Scott moved Arizona into the end zone after three plays and 51 yards.
Rich Rodriguez, in his first season as Arizona head coach, is now 3-5 in bowl game appearances.
Utah State 41, Toledo 15: In the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl, Kerwynn Williams ran for 235 yards and three touchdowns, and No. 18 Utah State (11-2) won a bowl game for the first time since 1993.
Chuckie Keeton scored on a 62-yard run to put Utah State up, 7-3, and Williams sparked a 28-point fourth quarter for Utah State when he broke through the defense and raced 63 yards for a touchdown to put the Aggies up 20-9.
Valdosta State 35, Winston-Salem State 7: In Florence, Alabama, Matt Pierce returned the opening kickoff 96 yards for a touchdown, and freshman Cedric O’Neal ran for 140 yards and a score to give Valdosta State the Division II championship. The Blazers (12-2) took a 21-0 halftime lead en route to their 10th straight win and first national title since 2007, coach David Dean’s debut season. The Rams are 14-1.
Sam Houston State 45, Eastern Washington 42: In Cheney, Washington, quarterback Brian Bell ran for two touchdowns and threw for another, and Sam Houston State raced to a 35-0 halftime lead but barely held on, earning a trip to the Football Championship Subdivision championship game.
The Bearkats (11-3) face top-seeded North Dakota State on Jan. 5 in Frisco, Texas. After the Bearkats dominated the first half, backup quarterback Vernon Adams tied a school record with six touchdown passes to pull the Eagles within a field goal with 3:02 to play. However, behind Tim Flanders, who rushed for 219 yards, Sam Houston State was able to run out the clock.


Juan Antonio Pizzi picks little-known striker in search of more Saudi Arabia firepower

Updated 24 min 44 sec ago
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Juan Antonio Pizzi picks little-known striker in search of more Saudi Arabia firepower

  • Haroun Kamara has only played seven times for his club side
  • Green Falcons to play Algeria and Greece next month

Al-Qadisiyah’s 20-year-old striker Haroun Kamara has been given an opportunity to stake an unlikely claim for a World Cup spot after being surprisingly named in Juan Antonio Pizzi’s squad for a three-week training camp in Spain.
Kamara, who was born in Jeddah to Guinean parents, has only made seven league appearances for lowly Al-Qadisiyah, scoring four goals and claiming two assists, but he has been given the chance to shine in friendlies against Algeria on May 9 and Greece six days later and book a seat on the plane to Russia.
The youngster follows in the footsteps of the likes of Somalian-British Mukhtar Ali and Egyptian Ahmed Al-Fiqi as the Saudi Football Federation look to harness the pool of players born in the Kingdom to expats and increase the depth of the Green Falcons’ squad.
Pizzi has turned to Kamara having struggled to find options in attack. Hazza Al-Hazza and Mujahid Al-Mania, who were both given their debuts over the past six months, have failed to convince upfront, while Mohannad Assiri has just one goal for his country in more than seven years. Mohammed Al-Sahlawi, who has 26 goals in 33 internationals, is favorite to lead the line, but Pizzi needs more options in attack.
In goal, Yasir Al-Mosaileem, Mohammed Al-Owais and Fawaz Al-Qarni retain their place in the squad, while Al-Nassr’s Waleed Abdullah, who featured in the last squad, made way for Al-Hilal’s Abdullah Al-Mayouf. Only three goalkeepers will be selected for the final 23-man squad.
In defense, Ali Al-Bulayhi is in line for a debut, having established himself as a key player at the heart of Al-Hilal defense, while Mohammed Al-Burayk’s performances at right-back for the Blues earned him a recall to the squad for the first time under Pizzi, replacing Hassan Muath.
The three Hawsawis — Osama, Omar and Motaz — retain their places as do full-backs Yasir Al-Shahrani, Mansour Al-Harbi and Saeed Al-Muwallad. The backline is edging closer to taking shape as Mohammed Jahfali, who was first brought into the squad in March’s friendlies against Ukraine and Belgium, looks to have done enough to convince Pizzi to hand him a second opportunity.
There were no real surprises in midfield as the team is boosted by the recovery of two high-profile names. Nawaf Al-Abed makes his long-awaited return to the national team set-up, having suffered an injury in November’s ill-fated Portugal camp under the now departed coach Edgardo Bauza. Al-Abed’s Al-Hilal teammate, Salman Al-Faraj, is also back in the squad after recovering from a three-month injury lay-off.
Spain-based trio Fahad Al-Muwallad, Yahya Al-Shehri and Salem Al-Dawsari miss out due to club commitments.

 

Saudi Arabia squad for games against Algeria (May 9) and Greece (May 15)

Goalkeepers: Yasir Al-Mosaileem, Mohammed Al-Owais, Fawaz Al-Qarni, Abdullah Al-Mayouf.
Defenders: Osama Hawsawi, Motaz Hawsawi, Omar Hawsawi, Mohammed Jahfal, Ali Al-Bulayhi, Mohammed Al-Burayk, Saeed Al-Muwallad, Yasir Al-Shahrani, Mansour Al-Harbi.
Midfielders: Abdulmalik Al-Khaibari, Abdllah Al-Khaibari, Ibrahim Ghaleb, Abdullah Otayf, Taisir Al-Jassim, Hussein Al-Moqahwi, Salman Al-Faraj, Nawaf Al-Abed, Mohammad Kanno, Mohammed Al-Kuwaikbi, Hattan Bahebri.
Forwards: Mohammed Al-Sahlawi, Mohannad Assiri, Haroun Kamara