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Allegiant Stadium, Paradise, Nevada Attendance: 21,970
Eastern Washington stuns UNLV 35-33 in double-OT opener
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LAS VEGAS (AP) Eric Barriere threw for 374 yards and three touchdowns - including a pair of first-down scoring strikes in each overtime - and Eastern Washington escaped with a 35-33 double-overtime victory over UNLV in a season opener on Thursday night.
It was the fourth time in ten years that the FCS Eagles upset an FBS opponent and they overcame three turnovers and three missed field goals - one on the final play in regulation - to do it.
EWU led 20-6 with 1:10 remaining in the third quarter after Dennis Merritt's 1-yard TD run. Daniel Gutierrez kicked a 47-yard field goal 1:20 into the fourth quarter and added a 51-yarder after a Barriere interception to pull the Rebels within 20-12. The Eagles lost a fumble on the ensuing kickoff and Charles Williams scored on a 16-yard run. UNLV added a two-point conversion to tie the game at 20 with 8:03 left to play. UNLV was in Eagles' territory before Tre Woods picked off a Doug Brumfield pass, setting up overtime.
The Rebels struck first in OT when Williams ran it in from 13 yards out, but Barriere answered with a scoring strike to Dylan Ingram on the Eagles' first play. Barriere struck again on first down in the second overtime, finding Blake Gobel for the 25-yard score. A rule change this season forces teams to go for two points after the first OT and Talolo Limu-Jones snagged a deflected pass to put EWU up 35-27. Brumfield ran it in from 19 yards out on the Rebels' second possession, but his pass attempt for two points was ruled incomplete after an offical review and the Eagles had their victory.
Williams finished with 172 yards on 27 carries with two scores for the Rebels.
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Updated September 3, 2021