Oregon 30, UCLA 20 - Game Summary

The Oregon Ducks played a game that defines the word solid. Strong rushing, a balanced air attack, defense, and few special teams errors clearly set Oregon apart as the better team on the field. Amassing 404 total yards to UCLA's 216, Oregon's strong offense and stifling defense were too much for UCLA to overcome.

Oregon's 404 yards of total offense was led by a powerful rushing attack. Jonathan Stewart (121), Dennis Dixon (69), and Jeremiah Johnson (66) piled up 256 yards on the ground, averaging six yards per carry. Dixon set a career-high on the ground with his 69 yards and also passed for 144 yards and two touchdowns on 10-for-17 passing. Stewart now has four 100-yard rushing games in five starts this season. Receiver Brian Paysinger set a career high with 105 yards today. On defense, linebacker Blair Phillips was named MVP with nine tackles, and freshman cornerback Jairus Byrd made a career-high eight tackles to complement his pass break-up.

Oregon kicked off the game with a seven-play, 85-yard drive. Set up by a 39-yard pass from Dixon to Paysinger and a couple of strong runs by Stewart, Dixon capped the drive with an 11-yard pass to a wide-open Dante Rosario. A blocked extra point put the score at 6-0 Oregon with 12:00 remaining in the first quarter. UCLA's first offensive series led to a punt by Aaron Perez after a quick three-and-out. On third down, Oregon safety JD Nelson sacked UCLA quarterback Patrick Cowan for a five-yard loss. Oregon's next drive saw running back Johnson go for two nine-yard gains and a run of the same distance by Dixon. Oregon's seven-play, 55-yard series was capped by a seven-yard touchdown by Johnson to bring the score to 13-0 Oregon with 5:32 remaining.

Dante Rosario touchdown

UCLA retaliated with a 63-yard, 12-play drive to set the score at 13-3 Oregon. Kicker Justin Medlock hit a 33-yard field goal through the uprights to end the drive. On the ensuing kickoff, Jonathan Stewart returned a short kickoff 47 yards to the UCLA 39. After a five-yard run and first down pass to Jaison Williams, Dixon hit Paysinger in the left corner of the endzone for a 26-yard touchdown to up the Oregon lead to 20-3 with 1:01 remaining in the first quarter. Dixon's pass to Paysinger was a replica of the play that gave Oregon the lead and win over Oklahoma on September 16th.

With a rushing attack led by Chris Markey, UCLA then drove 59 yards from their own 20-yard line. Medlock's 48-yard field goal set the score at 20-6 Oregon with 11:09 remaining in the second quarter. Oregon and UCLA exchanged punts on the next two drives. With time running out in the first half, the Oregon offense went for the first down on fourth and nine. Dixon's throw to Paysinger fell well short, and UCLA's incomplete Hail Mary pass by Cowan was knocked down by Oregon cornerback Byrd a moment later to send both teams into the tunnel. Halftime score Oregon 20, UCLA 6.

In the second half, the Oregon defense came out roaring. After Cowan ran for a first down, Byrd and Phillips tackled the UCLA ball carrier for minus four yards, and on the ensuing play, Dairus Sanders broke through for a tackle for minus two yards. Cowan's incomplete third down pass forced UCLA to punt.

Dixon sprinted out for a 34-yard quarterback keeper to get Oregon's second half offense moving. However, he was banged up on the play, and Brady Leaf replaced him. The Ducks were forced to punt after a short run and two incomplete passes. With the ball back in UCLA's hands, Sanders recorded his second tackle-for-loss on an eight-yard quarterback sack.

Oregon received the ball after a wide punt on their own 48-yard line. Dixon hit Brian Paysinger deep again on third down for a 33-yard gain. However, he was again banged up and had to come off the field. Leaf returned and capped the drive with a four-yard pass to James Finley for the touchdown and a 27-6 Oregon lead. Head coach Mike Bellotti's patented trickery was then displayed as Oregon successfully completed an onside kick to Jordan Kent. However, Leaf threw an interception on the next set of downs, and UCLA capitalized on the mistake. UCLA drove down to the one-yard line where running back Kahlil Bell punched in a touchdown run to lessen the margin at 27-13 in the fourth quarter.

Oregon's next drive ended in a missed field goal by Matt Evensen, but Oregon grabbed the ball back from UCLA a few minutes later on a step-in interception by rover Patrick Chung. After runs of 12, 27, and three yards, Stewart broke the 100-yard barrier and set up Oregon for a 22-yard field goal. Evensen completed the attempt to bring the score to 30-13 Oregon with 5:22 remaining in the fourth quarter. Starting from their 20-yard line, UCLA earned a first down before being shut down by the Oregon defense. On the punt, Oregon's Johnson had to run up to catch the ball and he dropped the punt. UCLA recovered the ball on their 19 and made quick work of the Oregon redzone defense for a one-yard touchdown run by Bell, his second of the day. UCLA's score put the game possibly within reach at 30-20 with 1:59 remaining, but Oregon's Ryan Keeling dove for an easy catch on the onside kick. With three Johnson runs, Oregon ran the time down and put the victory in the record books with a 30-20 win over UCLA.

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