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UCLA Loses to Oregon, 34-31

Oct 23, 2021
Brittain Brown (photo courtesy of Kirby Lee / USA Today Sports)

LOS ANGELES – The Bruins' late-game heroics fell short in their 34-31 loss to the No. 10 Ducks at the Rose Bowl on Saturday.
 
Two fourth-quarter touchdowns and interceptions put UCLA (5-3, 3-2 Pac-12) in position with three minutes left in the game to either even the score or take the lead on their final drive, but Oregon (6-1, 3-1 Pac-12) intercepted the ball with 48 seconds left to seal the game.
 
The Ducks were marching downfield into UCLA territory when senior defensive back Jay Shaw glided in front of an Oregon receiver to snag the Bruins' second interception of the fourth quarter. UCLA had its back against the walls twice in its final drive, but redshirt senior quarterback Dorian Thompson-Robinson converted on a 4th down and 7 with a 16-yard completion and, later in the drive, freshman quarterback Ethan Garbers moved the chains on a 4th and 8 strike to redshirt junior receiver Kyle Philips.
 
The Bruins scored their first points of the fourth quarter with a two-yard rush by Thompson-Robinson which was set up earlier in the drive by two conversions, both to redshirt junior tight end Greg Dulcich.
 
An interception by redshirt senior linebacker Jordan Genmark Heath and return for 20 yards set up UCLA's next touchdown. After a defensive holding penalty by the Ducks on 3rd and 6 on the Oregon six-yard line, redshirt senior running back Brittain Brown toted the ball for two carries, the last resulting in a touchdown.
 
Brown finished the game with 45 rushing yards on 13 carries for two touchdowns.
 
Thompson-Robinson threw for 99 yards of his total 220 passing yards in the fourth quarter.
 
The Ducks outscored the Bruins 27-3 in the second and third periods following a 14-0 cushion set by UCLA in the first quarter. Oregon running back Travis Dye rushed for four of the Ducks' five touchdowns on 14 carries for 35 yards. The other score came on a 43-yard TD rush by quarterback Anthony Brown.
 
Thompson-Robinson utilized his air and ground attack and the Bruin defense tallied a sack, three tackles for loss, a forced fumble and two pass break ups to give UCLA the early lead in the opening period.
 
Thompson-Robinson moved the ball with ease on the Bruins' first drive of the game with six first downs, completing all four of his passing attempts to four different receivers. On the Bruins' next two plays, Thompson-Robinson picked up two first downs on the ground with 10-and-11-yard rushes. A 13-yard carry touchdown by Brittain Brown – his fifth of the year – put the first points on the scoreboard, capping a 12-play, 75-yard possession.
 
Thompson-Robinson rushed for 35 yards on his 15 carries. Philips was the Bruins' leading receiver with 73 yards on eight receptions.
 
The Ducks threatened to answer the Bruins' score, attempting a fourth-down conversion at UCLA's 35 when redshirt senior linebacker Jordan Genmark Heath closed in to tackle Oregon running back Travis Dye for a turnover on downs.
 
A sack by redshirt junior linebacker Ale Kaho on the Ducks' next possession forced a punt on fourth and 20. Defensive back Martell Irby swarmed the Oregon punter for a block and fumble recovery, putting the ball in Thompson-Robinson's hands at the Oregon 30.
 
Thompson-Robinson promptly found redshirt sophomore running back Keegan Jones in stride down the sideline for a 19-yard reception. On the next play, Thompson-Robinson threw a quick strike to running back Kazmeir Allen for the touchdown.
 
UCLA's three points in the second quarter came off the boot of redshirt sophomore Nicholas Barr-Mira for a 37-yard field goal.