SILVER CITY, N.M. – After being down as many as 17 points, the Eastern New Mexico football team used two touchdowns in final minute to capture a 50-47 victory over Western New Mexico in the Green Chile Bowl on Saturday evening.
After the opening quarter saw each team grab a touchdown, Nathan Valencia found Devon Bailey in the back corner of the endzone to start the second quarter, 14-7 ENMU. Western followed with a touchdown of their own, with Devin Larsen connecting with Jacob Wallace, tying the score 14-14.
Western found two touchdowns on their next two possessions, but had both PAT’s blocked including Chase Phillips returning one to the endzone for two points, 26-16 Mustangs. The Greyhounds would grab a TD before both teams went to the locker room, with Valencia running a two-minute drill and finding Zachery Fields on a 4-yard strike, 26-23 WNMU at the half.
Western tacked on two scores to open the second half, pushing its lead to 17 points, 40-23. The following Greyhounds drive, Howard Russell found a seam and ran for a 46-yard touchdown, to bring the score back to 40-30 WNMU. Eastern followed up with Justin Manyweather snagging a TD just before the end of the 3rd quarter, 40-37, ENMU.
WNMU added on another score with 3:25 remaining in the 4th quarter, pushing the score to 47-37. The Greyhounds drove down the field, and Fields caught his second touchdown of the night, making the game 47-44 with under a minute to play.
Martavius Dill recovered the subsequent kickoff, giving the Hounds good field position at the WNMU 23 yard line with 57 seconds remaining. ENMU completed the comeback as Valencia connected with Manyweather in the endzone with 28 seconds remaining on the clock, 50-47 ENMU, following Western blocking the PAT. Western turned the ball over on the following possession securing the Greyhounds a memorable comeback win.
Valencia finished the game for 329 passing yards and five touchdowns.ENMU boost their record to 3-3 overall, and collect its first LSC win of the season (1-2). Western fall to 1-5 on the year, with a conference standing of 0-4.
Before Valencia’s 329 passing yards, the last Greyhound to pass for more then 300 yards was Ethan Brinkley (387) against West Texas A&M, on Oct. 31, 2015.
Eastern as a group posted a season high in total offense with 366 yards.
Manyweather is the first Greyhound to haul in over 200-plus receiving yards since Xavier Amey had 242 yards at West Texas A&M on Oct. 31, 2015. Manyweather also set a program record 16 receptions, beating out Darian Dale’s 14 catches in a game against Southeastern Okla, in Sept. 2009, based on avalible records.
ENMU still hold the series edge, 47-15-2, over Western.
With 97 total points scored during the game, Saturday’s contest game was the highest scoring Green Chile Bowl in series history, based on available records.
The Greyhounds now shift their attention to the Wagon Wheel game against West Texas A&M at Greyhound Stadium on Saturday, October 16. Kickoff is set to begin at 6 p.m.