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September 9, 2007Game Ticker | box score
PASADENA, Calif.(AP) Chris Markey ran for a late touchdown, Trey Brown returned an interception 56 yards for a score and the No. 13 UCLA defense held off a second-half BYU rally Saturday night for a 27-17 victory.
Kahlil Bell also ran for a touchdown in the first half to help the Bruins open the season with two victories and stop an 11-game BYU winning streak.
Down 20-3, BYU opened the second half with a pair of touchdown drives, but the UCLA defense forced a fumble on the ensuing possession and held the Cougars to three-and-out on the next.
UCLA (2-0) used a slow, 45-yard drive in the final three minutes that included a timely pass interference penalty on BYU and a Ben Olson completion on third-and-7. Markey's 3-yard touchdown run with 1:12 remaining sealed the win.
Most of the pre-game attention in both Provo and Pasadena was on Olson, who had redshirted at BYU before serving a church mission and transferring to UCLA. He passed for 126 yards, but no touchdowns.
Much of the game he was outplayed by BYU quarterback Max Hall, who also served a mission and came to the starting job last week, after not taking a snap for three years. A transfer from Arizona State, Hall threw for 380 yards and two touchdowns.
After BYU was held to a field goal in the first half, Hall opened the second with a pair of touchdown drives.
Working without a huddle, he completed passes of 18 and 23 yards followed by a 28-yarder to Andrew George that took the Cougars to the UCLA two.
Two short runs and a false start penalty followed, then Hall threw a 6-yard touchdown pass to Austin Collie to complete an 80-yard drive and pull within 20-10.
Kayle Buchanan intercepted an Olson on the next possession. After Harvey Unga broke a pair of tackles for a 24-yard run, Hall threw a 16-yard touchdown pass, laying the ball perfectly into the path of Austin Collie in the back of the end zone.
UCLA forced a three-and-out on BYU's next possession.
Brown, a cornerback, gave UCLA most of its production in the first half with returns on an interception and fumble. He picked off a Hall pass across the middle, swerved to his right and outran several pursuers. Picking up blocking along the way, Brown cut back to his left near the goal line and was tackled as he made it into the end zone to put UCLA up 10-0 with 1:58 remaining in the first quarter.
Bell was solely responsible for UCLA's only first-half touchdown drive. He carried four times, including runs of 26 and 17 yards, and his 4-yard TD burst gave the Bruins a 17-0 lead. Bell ran for 79 of UCLA's 112 yards.
Both teams were tepid early on offense and struggled for first downs. Olson managed a 37-yard pass to Joe Cowan on a 60-yard drive late that resulted in a 37-yard Forbath field goal and a 3-0 lead with 2:54 left in the first quarter.
Late in the half, Hall led the Cougars on a 53-yard march for their first score, a 27-yard field goal by Mitch Payne with five seconds on the clock.
BYU had not lost since a 23-20 overtime defeat to Boston College nearly a year ago. The Cougars had won two straight against Pac-10 opponents coming in. They beat Oregon in last year's Las Vegas Bowl and Arizona to open the season last week.