Oregon routs UCLA in second half for 24-10 victory
Just when UCLA appeared to be in a defensive slugfest with No. 13-ranked Oregon this afternoon at the Rose Bowl, the Ducks scored 21 unanswered points in the third quarter -- including a 100-yard kickoff return and an interception return for touchdowns just moments apart -- in a 24-10 victory over the Bruins.
Oregon improves to 5-1 on the season and 3-0 in Pacific 10 Conference play. UCLA falls to 3-2 overall and 0-2 conference.
Kenjon Barner took the second-half kickoff and went 100 yards for a touchdown to give the Ducks a 7-3 lead.
On the Bruins' first play from scrimmage in the third quarter, Oregon cornerback Talmadge Jackson intercepted a pass from Kevin Prince and returned it 32 yards for another score and a 14-3 lead.
UCLA was able to run only two more plays before turning the ball over again, this time Prince scrambling for a gain before coughing it up at midfield.
Ducks quarterback Nate Costa then capped a 50-yard drive with a 20-yard scoring pass to Jeff Maehl to give the Ducks a 21-3 lead.
UCLA cut the margin to 21-10 late in the third quarter when Akeem Ayers intercepted a Costa pass in the end zone following a 59-yard punt by Jeff Locke that pinned the Ducks at their one-yard line. Ayers batted the pass into the air and caught it before stepping out of bounds.
But the Bruins could muster little offense in the fourth quarter and fell to their second consecutive loss.
LaMichael James led the Oregon offense with 152 yards rushing in 20 carries, including one gain of 49 yards. Costa, playing in place of injured starter Jeremiah Masoli, completed nine of 17 passes for 81 yards.
Freshman quarterback Richard Brehaut, who played three series in the fourth quarter, completed five of 10 passes, but had one intercepted, for 64 yards. Starting quarterback Kevin Prince, who missed two games with a fractured jaw, completed 13 of his 25 passes for 81 yards.
Johnathan Franklin, who left the game in the first half with an ankle injury, led Bruins rushers with 32 yards in 10 carries. Prince was the next-leading rusher with 22 yards in eight carries.
Time is running out for the Bruins, who have been unable to mount a scoring drive in the final minutes against Oregon.
UCLA has shuffled freshman quarterback Richard Brehaut into the game. He completed five of his 10 passes, but had one intercepted, for 64 yards.
Starting quarterback Kevin Prince has completed 13 of his 25 passes for 81 yards with one interception.
-- Dan Loumena
Oregon 24, UCLA 10 (Fourth quarter)
After that dynamite Akeem Ayers end-zone interception/touchdown, with maybe a little surge of hope for the Bruins and their fans, to the field came the Ducks. It went like this. Running back LaMichael James up the gut for 11 yards, then 2, then 10. Then Kenjon Barner gets the ball and he goes for nearly 50.
Momentum? Hey, at least the Bruins defense held their ground here -- helped greatly by the fact Oregon's quarterback doesn't have an arm, he's got a noodle. The Ducks just kicked a 33-yard field goal. Oregon leads, 24-10, at start of fourth quarter. And we have a new quarterback: true freshman Richard Brehaut.
-- Kurt Streeter
Oregon 21, UCLA 10 (third quarter)
UCLA, on life support, just got a defibrillator-like jolt from linebacker Akeem Ayers.
Oregon, leading 21-3, was on its own two-yard line. Quarterback Nate Costa dropped into the end zone to pass and saw Ayers charging at him. Costa threw. Ayers lept, and intercepted the pass. He then toed the out of bounds line, staying inside the end zone on the green, for a touchdown.
-- Chris Foster
Kerplunk. Collapse. UCLA led 3-0 at halftime. Then came the Oregon kickoff return, the easy interception for a touchdown, a UCLA fumble and, now, with less than 4 minutes off the clock, the culmination of an eight-play Ducks drive.
Wide receiver Jeff Maehl scooted past a flailing and confused Bruins defense on his way to the end zone for Oregon. Ducks lead, 21-3. Ouch. What hurts even more? Bruins starting running back Johnathan Franklin hasn't played since suffering what looked like an ankle inujry in the second quarter.
-- Kurt Streeter
Oregon’s offense has not been on the field in the second half and the Ducks have two touchdowns and a 14-3 lead.On the first play after Kenjon Barner’s 100-yard kickoff return, Ducks’ cornerback Tamladge Jackson stepped into front of Bruins receiver Terrence Austin and intercepted a Kevin Prince pass. Jackson went 32 yards for the touchdown.
The second half is being delayed. Chain crew is nowhere to be found was has just been paged. Turns out, they weren’t needed immediately. Oregon’s Kenjon Barner took the kickoff in the end zone and cruised through the UCLA kick coverage for what was officially called a 100-yard kickoff return and a 7-3 Oregon lead.
UCLA 3, Oregon 0 (halftime)
There appeared to be little difference between UCLA and Oregon during the first half at the Rose Bowl this afternoon. The one thing that did stick out, though, was the Bruins' ability to kick a long field goal.
Kai Forbath nailed a 52-yard field goal with 5 minutes 59 seconds left in the second quarter and UCLA went into halftime leading, 3-0. Oregon kicker Rob Beard, on the other hand, had a 51-yard attempt blocked by Jerzy Siewierski in the first quarter.
The Bruins' Kevin Prince, out four weeks with a fractured jaw, returned at quarterback and completed nine of 15 passes for 51 yards. He handled a lurching, 66-yard drive that required 16 plays and took 7 minutes 55 seconds off the clock. It stalled at the Oregon 34-yard line.
Nate Costa started at quarterback for the Ducks in place of Jeremiah Masoli, who is out with an injured right knee. Costa looked uncomfortable running the offense and the Ducks were held to 140 total yards.
Oregon has not scored a point in the Rose Bowl in six quarters, having been shutout, 16-0, by the Bruins in 2007.
Both teams played field position throughout the half. Twice, Oregon started at its own one-yard line, the first time after stopping UCLA on a fourth-and-inches play inside the one.
Prince completed an eight-yard pass to Chane Moline to give UCLA a first down at the two-yard line. After Derrick Coleman gained one yard in two carries, Prince was stopped twice on quarterback sneaks.
UCLA had 118 yards in the half.
-- Chris Foster
Second quarter (UCLA 3, Oregon 0)
UCLA 3, Oregon 0 . . . Second quarter nearly done. This is a tale of two sputtering teams.
Question 1: Is Kai Forbath the Bruins' best player?
Question 2: Where would the Bruins be without him?
-- Kurt Streeter
UCLA lurched forward in a drive that started at its own one, going 65 yards in 16 plays, working 7 minutes 55 seconds off the clock.
It ended with a 52-yard field goal by Kai Forbath. UCLA has held the ball for 14 minutes on its last two drives.
-----<>UCLA tailback Johnathan Franklin is having his right ankle taped on the sidelines. Damien Thigpen is running at tailback.
UCLA just threw back-to-back deep passes, one of which resulted in a holding call on Oregon. Kevin Prince scrambled 12 yards for a first down. Franklin back in for UCLA, which is at the Oregon 34-yard line.
First Quarter (UCLA 0, Oregon 0)
Kevin Prince was stopped twice on fourth and inches inside the one-yard line. It came at the end of a 12-play drive. Prince completed an eight-yard pass to Chane Moline for a first down at the two-yard line. Four plays netted a little more than a yard.<>On the second play after getting the ball back, Oregon’s LaMichael James went through the line, spun twice, and was off on a 49-yard run. Oregon has the ball at the UCLA 45 at the end of the first quarter.
-- Chris Foster
An aside here. When Oregon plays in Eugene, all those web-fingered crazies packed inside that mosh pit known as Autzen Stadium, often in the driving rain, now that’s home-field advantage.As large as exists on the west coast, maybe the nation.
So…here were are at the Rose Bowl today for UCLA vs. Oregon. The weather is nice and warm and comforting. The crowd, generally glued to their seats, seems kinda-sorta-into-things, unless it’s a third down or there's obvious tension on the field -- the Bruins with the ball near the end zone, for example. Moreover, several sections of this massive stadium are completely empty. Home advantage for the Bruins? It’s there, sure, but compared to places that are really unpleasant for visitors to play, it's negligible
How much of this is because the Rose Bowl is so far from UCLA’s campus that a huge majority of students simply don’t want to bother with a drive that can take up to an hour?
-- Kurt Streeter
Jerzy Siewierski blocked a 51-yard field goal attempt by Oregon’s Rob Beard.
The Ducks' drive was hurt by back-to-back false start penalties after they got to the UCLA 42-yard line.
Kevin Prince started at quarterback for UCLA. His first pass was woefully short. His second high. Fourth down and the Bruins are punting.
Chris Ward, an offensive lineman from Santa Ana Mater Dei High, said he committed to UCLA before the game against Oregon.
UCLA will be without reserve tailback Milton Knox today when the Bruins take on Oregon in a Pacific 10 Conference game. A UCLA official said the redshirt freshman was ill.
Knox, who is third on the depth chart, has 55 yards rushing this season.
>-- Chris Foster
>Photo: Kevin Prince, shown against San Diego State in the season opener, started at quarterback after missing two games. Credit: Lisa Blumenfeld / Getty Images