The Stanford Cardinal rebounded after last week’s upset loss to Utah on the road, defeating the No. 9-ranked UCLA Bruins 24-10.
In a largely uneventful first half, the two teams exchanged punts for most of the opening quarter. The Cardinal defense was superb, putting pressure on stud quarterback Brett Hundley all day long.
The silence was broken near the end of the first quarter. Stanford had the ball in the red zone, and narrowly avoided disaster when UCLA failed to recover a fumble. Conrad Ukropina, kicking in the place of an injured Jordan Williamson, drilled a 31-yard field goal to give his team the lead.
The second quarter saw no more scoring, but did contain a good amount of strong defense. Both teams looked outstanding on defense throughout the first half, and neither offense could get much going.
A late interception by the Bruins held off another Stanford score just before the half, and the Cardinal took their 3-0 lead into half time.
UCLA opened the second half with a long drive that culminated in a field goal of its own to tie the game up at 3. However, the Cardinal then took off in the third quarter. Kodi Whitfield made a gorgeous one-handed catch from 30 yards out to give Stanford a 10-3 lead.
The defense then made a big play when Jordan Richards picked off a Hundley pass and returned it for a touchdown.
The score was called back due to a holding call, but Tyler Gaffney proceeded to punch in a rushing touchdown to extend his team’s lead.
UCLA’s offense finally started to make some noise, as Hundley hit Shaq Evans for a 3-yard touchdown pass on the opening play of the fourth quarter.
The Bruins had the ball with just over three minutes to play in the game down only 10-17. However, Richards was the hero yet again, making his second interception of the day. From there, Stanford wore down the clock and Gaffney punched in another touchdown to give his team a 24-10 lead that it never lost.
Next week, the Cardinal will travel North to take on a hot Oregon State team on the road.