Fresno State ends first losing season since '98 with loss

SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) -- Adam Tafralis threw three touchdown passes and rushed for a career-high 76 yards, helping San Jose State end a 12-game losing streak to Fresno State with a 24-14 victory Saturday.

Christopher Owens intercepted two passes, one in the final three minutes, and Matt Castelo made a key interception inside the five-yard line for the New Mexico Bowl-bound Spartans (8-4, 5-3 WAC), who last beat Fresno State in 1990.

Dwayne Wright rushed for 106 yards and scored a touchdown for the Bulldogs (4-8, 4-4), who had their three-game winning streak snapped and ended with a losing season for the first time since 1998.

Tom Brandstater threw for 215 yards on 21-of-37 passing for the Bulldogs, but he also threw four interceptions.

Dwight Lowry intercepted his ninth pass, a school record, for the Spartans.

Tafralis threw for 206 yards as the Spartans finished the regular season with five more wins than last year. The eight wins is the most since the Spartans finished 9-2-1 in 1990, also their last appearance in a bowl game.

The Spartans scored twice in the first 4 minutes of the game, including their first offensive play.

Senior wide receiver John Broussard got open deep and caught Tafralis' pass in stride, running untouched into the end zone to complete the 85-yard play, the eighth longest pass play in San Jose State history, with the game 35 seconds old.

Owens picked off Brandstater's first pass and returned it to the Bulldogs' 29, setting up James T. Callier's 10-yard pass from Tafralis with 11:36 left in the first quarter.

Fresno State struck back with two second quarter touchdowns to tie it at 14.

Wright's 11-yard romp with 12:32 left in the first half capped a 91-yard, 13-play drive.

Fresno State senior linebacker Alan Goodwin picked up a loose ball and returned it 28 yards for the tying score. Marcus McCauley knocked the ball loose from Spartan receiver Pat Perry and Goodwin grabbed the ball in the air.

San Jose State scored the go-ahead touchdown after a strange turn of events on a fourth down play in the closing minutes of the first half.

The Spartans tried to draw Fresno State off sides on a fourth down call at the Bulldogs' 42-yard line. Failing that the Spartans elected to take a delay penalty. Waylon Prather punted the ball, where it was originally ruled downed at the one.

A review of the play determined that the ball bounced into the end zone and would be placed on the 20. Fresno State, though, was offside on the play and the Spartans elected to take the penalty, getting another chance.

This time Tafralis hooked up with James Jones on a 42-yard touchdown pass. Jones caught the pass under heavy pressure and bulled his way into the end zone.

Jared Strubeck added a 25-yard field goal with 8:50 left to play to give the Spartans their 10-point advantage at 24-14.