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Rice Stadium, Houston, Texas Attendance: 18,746
McMahon leads Rice past Louisiana-Lafayette 33-21
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HOUSTON (AP) TJ McMahon threw for 303 yards with three touchdown passes to lead Rice over Louisiana-Lafayette 33-21 on Saturday night in a Conference USA opener.
McMahon, who threw an 8-yard touchdown pass to Luke McCaffrey late in the second quarter, hit Bradley Rozner for a 12-yard score early in the third. McCaffrey added a 6-yard TD pass to McCaffrey in the fourth quarter.
Louisiana-Lafayette (2-1, 0-1) built a 14-13 halftime lead behind Caleb Anderson's pick-6 and Chandler Fields' 11-yard touchdown pass to Terrence Williams. Chris Smith broke loose for a 22-yard touchdown to pull the Ragin' Cajuns to 27-21 with 9:17 left.
But on the ensuing possession, Rice (2-1, 1-0) ate up more than six minutes with an 11-play, 70-yard drive capped by Ari Broussard's 2-yard touchdown run.
McMahon was 25-of-36 passing but was intercepted three times. McCaffrey finished with 10 catches for 105 yards.
Louisiana-Lafayette was held to 175 total yards compared to Rice's 449.
It was the sixth meeting between the teams but first since Sept. 23, 1989 when Louisiana-Lafayette won 18-3.
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Updated September 18, 2022