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Oregon State Defense is Bright Spot in Loss to Utah

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Russ Isabella-USA TODAY Sports

Utah came into the game wanting to rebound from a blowout lost to USC last week. That loss dropped them from 3rd in the nation to 13th. They showed how dominating their run game is in their 27-12 win over the Beavers. They improved their overall record to 7-1, 4-1 in Pac-12 play. Oregon State drops to 2-6 on the season, and are winless in conference play with a record of 0-5. The Beavers sit at last in the Pac-12 North.

The Utes opened up their first drive of the game going 70 yards with no passes attemped. Their drive was extended when Oregon State failed to stop Utah on a 4 and 1. Devontae Booker had his touchdown called back as his knee hit the ground before crossing the goal-line.

Devontae Booker TD

On the next play he scored from the one, above, behind a block by JJ Dielman that not only covered Oregon State's defensive lineman, it also kept Rommel Mageo from closing the gap.

Harrison Handley TD

Utah had a 14-0 lead after the next series, on Travis Wilson's pass to Harrison Hardley, above, and at the end of the first quarter, in what would like a start to a very one-sided game.

Oregon State made the game close in the second quarter scoring six points off of two Garrett Owens field goals, his longest 31 yards to cut the lead to 14-6. They were without Seth Collins, who was hurt in practice Thursday.

The Beavers' defense came alive, holding the Utes offense scoreless in the second quarter. They held Utah to five yards rushing and 32 total yards.

After halftime, the Beavers' defense continued to hold strong holding the 13th team in the nation scoreless. While Oregon State's defense played well, they struggled on the offense side of the ball. 3rd string redshirt freshman quarterback Nick Mitchell started the game for the Beavers. He led the Beavers on some good drives, but could never quite finish. He had some great runs, one which he spun away from a defender and made a first down. They, however, couldn't score as they went scoreless in the third quarter.

At 14:20 of the fourth quarter, Utah would finally score again with a 49 yard field goal from Andy Philips.

Travis Wilson TD

Travis Wilson added to that score off of a quarterback option with a two yard run, above, to extend their lead to 24-6.

The Beavers, however, never stopped fighting. Nick Mitchell looked like he threw in to double coverage, but Jordan Villamin somehow made the catch.

Jordan Villamin

He bounced off of a defender, and made it to the Utes one before being tackled for a 74 yard gain. Victor Boldin would drop a wide open pass from Mitchell. They however did not give up on him, as Mitchell on the following play found Boldin again for the two yard touchdown throw, below.

Victor Bolden TD

The Beavers went for two, but failed after their first touchdown of the game 24-12.

The lead for Utah was extended to 27-12 off of another Andy Philips field goal, this time a 45 yard kick. Oregon State tried to cut into the lead in the final minutes. They were bailed out on a 4 and 10, off of a pass interference call against Utah. The Beavers could not capitalize on the penalty as they came up empty handed. Utah ran out the clock for the win.

Devontae Booker

The player of the game was Devontae Booker, above, who finished the game with 121 yards rushing and one touchdown. He continues to prove he is one of the best backs in the Pac-12.

Travis Wilson

Travis Wilson, above, finished the game 14 of 17, for 198 yards and a touchdown through the air. He also carried the ball 14 times, for 56 yards and a touchdown.

On the Oregon State side, their defense was probably the best part of the game.

Nick Mitchell

Nick Mitchell, above, had a strong showing for starting his first game going 19 of 35, 204 yards and one touchdown. He carried the ball 12 times for 40 yards. Jordan Villamin led all Beaver receivers with 99 yards off of three receptions.

Victor Bolden RB

One of the notable moves made by the Oregon State coaches was the extent to which they used Bolden as a running back. Bolden, above, had 7 carries for 45 yards. Equally notable, Ryan Nall had zero carries, this just a week after a career high game. Nall did have w catches.

Oregon State host UCLA the 24th team in the nation next week, game time is 1:30 PM on the Pac-12 Network.

(Photos by Andy Wooldridge)