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UCLA football: Arizona 27, Bruins 13 (final)

October 24, 2009 |  3:24 pm

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Arizona was in a giving mood, but UCLA wasn't good enough to take away a victory in a Pacific 10 Conference game today in Tucson.

Arizona turned the ball over five times -- leading to all of UCLA's points -- but the Bruins still finished a couple of touchdowns short, 27-13.

UCLA has now lost four consecutive games -- all since conference play began -- after a 3-0 start.

The Bruins' defense, which had been considered the team's strong suit, gave up 456 yards, 209 yards rushing (at 7.1 yards a carry) and 247 passing.

UCLA's offense, meantime, used three quarterbacks who combined to complete 15 of 35 passes. The running game also ground to a halt, gaining 65 yards in 23 carries, an average of 2.8 yards a rush.

Remember UCLA Coach Rick Neuheisel saying the Bruins would either run the ball or "die trying"?

Well, there ya go.

The star of the offense: Kai Forbath, who entered the game as the nation's leading kicker. He made field goals of 53 and 33 yards. But even he wasn't perfect. He missed a 52-yard try at the start of the fourth quarter.

UCLA's only touchdown was turned in by the defense. Midway through the third quarter, Akeem Ayers forced a fumble on a backward pass, which was recovered by Tony Dye and returned 28 yards for a touchdown.

-- Mike Hiserman

Arizona 27, UCLA 13 (fourth quarter)

Both teams have had drives ending in missed field goals. For UCLA’s Kai Forbath, his shank on a 52-yard attempt was only his second miss this season, both from beyond 50 yards. He is 20 for 22.

Arizona’s Alex Zendejas missed a 39-yard try. The Wildcats can afford it. UCLA can’t with 11 minutes left.

Arizona 27, UCLA 13 (third quarter)

After recovering a fumble, Arizona struck quickly, going 51 yards in six plays. Quarterback Nick Foles threw a short pass to Juron Criner, who went 25 yards for the score with 8 minutes 34 seconds left in the third quarter. The play was made possible by wide receiver William Wright, whose block sent cornerback Sheldon Price flying end over end.

Arizona 20, UCLA 13 (third quarter)

UCLA finally found a way into the end zone. The Bruins let their defense do it. Linebacker Akeem Ayers nearly picked off a Nick Foles backwards pass. The ball was ruled live as a lateral and safety Tong Dye scooped it up and raced 28 yards for the touchdown, cutting the Arizona lead to 20-13.

Arizona has turned the ball over five times, three of which have led to UCLA's 13 points.

Arizona 20, UCLA 6 (third quarter)

After recovering a fumble, Arizona struck quickly, going 51 yards in six plays.

Quarterback Nick Foles threw a short pass to Juron Criner, who went 25 yards for the score with 8 minutes 34 seconds left in the third quarter. The play was made possible by wide receiver William Wright, whose block sent cornerback Sheldon Price flying end over end.

Arizona 13, UCLA 6 (third quarter)

UCLA changes quarterbacks. Kevin Craft in the game for Kevin Prince. Things remain status quo. Bruins tailback Christian Ramirez is stripped of the ball and Arizona defensive back Devin Ross recovers.

Arizona 13, UCLA 6 (third quarter)

UCLA gets a gift. On the first play of the second half, a bad exchange between Arizona quarterback Nick Foles and running back Greg Nwoko leaves the ball on the ground. Defensive end Datone Jones recovered it.

But the Bruins manage only two yards in three plays, and settle for a 33-yard field goal by Kai Forbath to cut the Arizona lead to, 13-6. It left the Bruins within as touchdown, but they have yet to show they can score a touchdown.

The Bruins have now replaced Kevin Prince with Kevin Craft at quarterback.

Arizona 13, UCLA 3 (halftime)

UCLA can claim some impressive highlights from the first half.

Rahim Moore intercepted two passes. Jeff Locke had an 81-yard punt -- adjusted to 61 with the touchback. Kai Forbath nailed a 52-yard field goal.

All of which amounted to little more than feel-good moments, since the Bruins trailed Arizona 13-3, at halftime.

Moore’s interceptions, both coming with the Wildcats deep in UCLA territory, kept the Bruins from being routed in the first half. Forbath’s field goal kept them from being shut out. Locke’s kick left Arizona too far to go to add to its lead. The Wildcats got to the UCLA 39, but Nick Foles' pass was tipped by defensive end Korey Bosworth and was intercepted by defensive tackle Jerzy Siewierski with 29 seconds left in the half.

The rest of the half was controlled by the Wildcats.

Wildcats receiver Juron Criner burned cornerback Courtney Viney, turning him every which way before taking in a perfect pass from Foles for a 41-yard touchdown strike and a 7-0 lead with 4 minutes 39 seconds left in the first quarter.

On the first play after the kickoff, UCLA quarterback Kevin Prince was hit and lost the ball. Apaiata Tuihalamaka recovered at the Bruins’ 23-yard line. The Wildcats scored three plays on a six-yard run by Nic Grigsby.

Foles completed 14 of 20 passes for 157 yards in the half. The Wildcats gained 103 yards rushing, 74 by wide receivers on fly reverses.

The Bruins had 97 total yards in the half.

Arizona 13, UCLA 3 (second quarter)

After Rahim Moore’s interception stopped an Arizona drive, the Bruins lurched up field and scored their first points of the afternoon on a 52-yard field goal by Kai Forbath, who is now 18 for 19 this season. He has nine field goals in his career from 50 yards or more.

But UCLA could have had much more if not for a holding penalty and a false start. The holding wiped out a seven-yard pass that would have given UCLA a first down at the Arizona 19.

Arizona 13, UCLA 0 (second quarter)

Arizona was driving for a third touchdown when safety Rahim Moore again found himself in the right place at the right time. Quarterback Nick Foles' woeful pass went directly to Moore, who now has two interceptions today.

Moore has seven interceptions this season, tying him for fourth on UCLA’s single-season list.

Arizona 13, UCLA 0 (first quarter)

On the first play after the kickoff, UCLA quarterback Kevin Prince is hit and loses the ball. Apaiata Tuihalamaka recovered the ball at the Bruins’ 23-yard line.

The Wildcats go with three running plays and score. Nic Grigsby goes the last six yards, getting hit by safety Rahim Moore at the goal line. Moore goes down, Grigsby was left standing. Arizona misses the PAT.

Reggie Carter was in at linebacker. Johnathan Franklin is in at tailback.

Arizona 7, UCLA 0 (first quarter)

UCLA cornerback Courtney Viney had a good view of Arizona’s first touchdown. Of course, he was supposed to be trying to prevent it.

Wildcats receiver Juron Criner turned Viney every which way,then got loose, taking in a perfect pass from Nick Foles for a 41-yard touchdown play.

For those keeping score at home …

UCLA gave up four touchdowns of 40-or-more yards against Cal last week. So far, the Bruins have given up one to Arizona and trail, 7-0, with 4:39 left in the first quarter.

UCLA 0, Arizona 0 (first quarter)

Linebacker Reggie Carter, who has an injured left knee, is not playing. Kyle Bosworth has moved inside to middle linebacker and Sean Westgate is at outside linebacker.

Arizona drove to the UCLA 26-yard line. But a Nick Foles pass was high and glanced off the hands of David Douglas. The Bruins’ Rahim Moore intercepted it.

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Christian Ramirez starts at tailback instead of Johnathan Franklin, who has a sprained left ankle. Ramirez gains six yards on the first play.

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The first confrontation of the day and the game has yet to start. Drive stall and UCLA punts.

Arizona players finished warming up and raced to mid-field, eventually invading UCLA's territory.

While the Wildcats got all wound up, UCLA linebacker Reggie Carter and cornerback Aaron Hester walked over and appeared to have a polite conversation. Something along the lines of, “Gentlemen, I hate to interrupt, but it appears you inadvertently wandered into our area. If you would be ever so kind to take a few steps, we would appreciate it.”

-- Chris Foster

Photo: UCLA safety Rahim Moore is tackled by Arizona's Terrell Turner (84) and Nic Grigsby (5) after an interception in the first half Saturday. Credit: John Miller / Associated Press

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