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Boise State wins Poinsettia Bowl

SAN DIEGO (TSX) -- Behind Jeremy McNichols' three touchdowns, Boise State dominated Northern Illinois 55-7 in the Poinsettia Bowl on Wednesday. McNichols, a running back who leads the nation with 26 touchdowns, rushed for two scores and had a tou...

SAN DIEGO (TSX) - Behind Jeremy McNichols' three touchdowns, Boise State dominated Northern Illinois 55-7 in the Poinsettia Bowl on Wednesday.
McNichols, a running back who leads the nation with 26 touchdowns, rushed for two scores and had a touchdown reception. He gained a combined 189 yards, rushing for 93 on 19 carries and collecting 96 on five receptions.
Boise State (9-4) raced to a 21-0 lead in the first quarter and won for the sixth time in its last seven bowl games. The Huskies (8-6) lost their third straight game and fell to 0-3 in Poinsettia Bowl games.
Broncos freshman quarterback Brett Rypien completed 29 of 40 passes for 377 yards and three touchdowns. He was intercepted once.
Northern Illinois quarterback Ryan Graham returned to the lineup and was 7 of 21 for 38 yards.
Boise State linebacker Tyler Gray recovered two of Northern Illinois' three first-half fumbles as the Huskies were limited to 36 yards in the opening 30 minutes.
Overall, Boise State outgained NIU 654-33.
Wide receiver Chaz Anderson caught a 16-yard pass from Rypien in the final minute of the first half to Give the Broncos a 31-7 advantage.
Boise State wasted little time seizing the lead.
McNichols scored his first touchdown, a 29-yard scoring run up the middle, less than a minute in.
The Broncos extended their lead to 14-0 when converting Northern Illinois' first turnover. Gray recovered Graham's fumble, with Boise State taking possession at its 33-yard line. Seven plays later, Rypien hit McNichols with a 4-yard scoring pass for a 14-0 cushion.
Boise State scored its third first-quarter touchdown, the most ever in a Poinsettia Bowl, when McNichols rushed over from the 1 for a 21-0 edge.
Tyler Rausa's 20-yard field goal early in the second quarter pushed the Broncos' bulge to 24-0 after the Huskies' second fumble.
Aregeros Turner pulled the Huskies within 24-7 when he returned a kickoff for a Poinsettia Bowl-record 96 yards and a touchdown. For Turner, the MAC special teams player of the year, it was his second scoring kick return of the season.
NOTES: It was the first meeting between the teams. ... Boise State landed six players on the All-Mountain West team. ... Broncos RB Jeremy McNichols' touchdown 58 seconds after kickoff was the fastest score in Boise State bowl history. ... The Broncos' 55 points were a Poinsettia Bowl best. ... Aregeros Turner's 96-yard kickoff return was Northern Illinois' first for a touchdown in a bowl game

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