LAS CRUCES, N.M. -- San Jose State has earned its share of lopsided wins this season. None featured as complete a performance as Saturday's 47-7 drubbing of New Mexico State.
"Coach is always talking about playing a complete game," junior defensive back Bené Benwikere said. "That was the closest we've come to playing a complete game this year."
The Spartans (8-2, 4-1 Western Athletic Conference) won their fourth straight game, their fifth straight on the road and earned their most lopsided victory in 12 years.
"We just want to keep winning," SJSU coach Mike MacIntyre said. "We've won five games in a row on the road, and we were so close to having six. That's a big, big deal for us."
Spartans junior quarterback David Fales threw for 276 yards and four touchdowns. He matched Steve Clarkson's 1981 school record for touchdown passes in a season with 25.
"It's exciting. I'm happy," Fales said. "It's our offense as a whole and what our offensive coaches are doing getting us prepared. That's basically just a reward for that."
SJSU thoroughly dominated and used its backups for the majority of the second half. New Mexico State (1-9, 0-5) ended the Spartans' bid for a second shutout this season when it scored in the final minute.
"We played everybody on the team," MacIntyre said. "Of course you'd like to have the shutout, but I'd rather play the guys than have to worry about the shutout."
It's SJSU's largest margin
The Spartans have been hampered at times by slow starts and momentary letdowns. That wasn't the case in this one as SJSU jumped to a 37-0 halftime lead.
"We wanted to come out and win the first quarter," Fales said. "We focused on that and got mentally and emotionally prepared to come out in the first quarter and just get it going."
The Spartans settled for a 36-yard Austin Lopez field goal on their first drive but delivered explosive plays the rest of the half.
De'Leon Eskridge burst through the middle of the field for a career-long 63-yard touchdown. He finished with 96 yards on six carries, all in the first half.
"The whole middle of the field was open," Eskridge said. "When I hit it, I was just thinking, 'Don't get caught.' "
Chandler Jones then took his turn. He caught a short screen pass, got blocks up the left side and went 70 yards for a touchdown.
Jones scored again on a 14-yard pass play. That was set up by Benwikere's team-leading fourth interception of the year. He returned it for a touchdown, but a penalty negated the score.
Another short pass led to another big play for SJSU. Fales flipped a screen to Ina Liaina, and the bruising fullback got a block from tight end Peter Tuitupou that sprung a 58-yard touchdown.
"It's nice to be able to throw little screens and watch receivers make plays," Fales said.
Benwikere made another big play when he picked up a fumble and went 37 yards for a touchdown. That made it 37-0 with 3:53 left in the second quarter and sent some of the home fans headed for the exits.
"I always have my eyes out for the ball," said Benwikere, who also returned an interception for a touchdown a week earlier against Idaho. "It came my way twice. Happy to pick it up twice."
Fales delivered his record-tying touchdown pass in the first minute of the third quarter when he hit Ryan Otten for a 36-yard touchdown. Fales watched the rest of the game from the sideline with the Spartans lead 44-0.
Follow Jimmy Durkin on Twitter at twitter.com/Jimmy_Durkin.