Rams win big in conference opener at Hawaii

Justin Michael

Despite having dominated the series for the last two decades, Colorado State football entered the matchup with Hawaii knowing that they could not take the Rainbow Warriors lightly. The Rams went into Aloha Stadium and took care of business Saturday night, handily defeating the home team 51-21, and bringing the winning streak over Hawaii to seven games. 

Senior wide receiver Michael Gallups runs in the open field Saturday night. The Rams defeated Hawaii 51-21. (Photo courtesy of CSU Athletics)
Senior wide receiver Michael Gallups runs in the open field Saturday night. The Rams defeated Hawaii 51-21. (Photo courtesy of CSU Athletics)

Coming off the bye week, the Rams were well rested and it showed, as CSU truly dominated every aspect of the game. From start to finish the Rams were able to do whatever they wanted, leading the game in its entirety and never giving the Warriors a chance to establish some momentum in front of the home fans.

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While the Hawaii offense started with three straight three-and-out possessions, CSU went down the field three straight times for touchdown scores.  

The Rams got the action started with drives of 60, 61 and 56 yards respectively. The first two were capped off with 30+ yard scores from senior wide receiver Detrich Clark while tight end Dalton Fackrell worked his way in the mix as well with a two-yard touchdown reception early in the second quarter.

“I was really proud of our whole team and the way we started the game,” head coach Mike Bobo said. “We wanted to start fast. We used the word ‘dominate’ all week. Not to dominate with our play, but to dominate with our focus, and I love how we started the game.”

In the process, senior quarterback Nick Stevens passed Moses Moreno in all-time career touchdown passes with 52. Stevens is now second all-time in program history, trailing only Garrett Grayson (64).

After scoring on each of their first five possessions of the game, CSU took a 31-7 lead into halftime. By the end of the first 30 minutes, CSU outgained Hawaii by over 100 yards and executed six more third down conversions.

The second half was more of the same for Bobo’s offense. Senior wide receiver Michael Gallup opened up the third quarter with two receptions for 50 yards and running back Dalyn Dawkins capitalized on the momentum, capping off the drive with a 19-yard rushing touchdown. 

Quarterback Nick Stevens (7) rolls out looking for an open wide receiver down the field.
Quarterback Nick Stevens (7) rolls out looking for an open wide receiver down the field. (Photo courtesy of CSU Athletics)

Izzy Matthews added nine carries for 95 yards and a pair of touchdowns. In the fourth quarter, the junior running back broke off a 66-yard touchdown to put the final nail in Hawaii’s coffin. The run was the longest of his collegiate career.

Gallup finished the contest with eight receptions for 212 yards and one touchdown. Clark also had a big night with two receptions for 74 yards and a pair of touchdowns. Dawkins led all ball carriers with 130 yards, the first Ram to go over the century mark in a single game in 2017.

Stevens totaled 348 yards through the air Saturday night. In total, he finished the game 16-of-20 for 348 yards and four touchdowns.

The Colorado State offense as a whole finished the game with 610 total yards. In the game, CSU finished an efficient 6-of-9 on third down and scored on its first seven offensive possessions.

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The victory over the Rainbow Warriors (2-3) was the Rams’ first of Mountain West play and the first in a conference opener since 2011. It was also their largest victory over Hawaii since 1997 when they defeated the Warriors 63-0.

CSU (3-2) will look to carry the momentum into next week’s matchup with Utah State in Logan, Utah on Saturday, Oct. 7. The game with the Aggies is scheduled for kickoff at 2:30 p.m. MT and is televised on AT&T Sports Network.

Collegian sports director Justin Michael can be reached by email at jmichael@collegian.com or Twitter @JustinTMichael.