Running back Ula Tolutau recorded his first career 100-yard rushing game with 102 yards on 21 carries. (Photo by Jaren Wilkey/BYU Photo)
LOGAN, Utah – Plagued by turnovers, BYU fell to Utah State 40-24 Friday night at Maverik Stadium.
“We had way too many errors for us to overcome and have a chance to win this game," BYU head coach Kalani Sitake said. "We’re going to evaluate everything again. The only choice we have is to go back to square one and try to find a way to win games and try to get this win against Boise State next week.”
The Cougars had a season-high 210 rushing yards but couldn’t overcome seven turnovers. Running back Ula Tolutau recorded his first career 100-yard rushing game with 102 yards on 21 carries.
Beau Hoge completed 5 of 9 for 95 yards and two touchdowns. Koy Detmer Jr. came in midway through the second quarter and was 7 of 20 for 91 yards. Beau Tanner and Jonah Trinnaman led BYU receivers with 40 and 39 yards, respectively.
The team had a season-high four sacks. Zayne Anderson and Sione Takitaki led the Cougars with nine tackles apiece, and Takitaki had 1.5 tackles for loss. Dayan Ghanwoloku and Fred Warner both added eight tackles. Warner also had a career-high three tackles for loss.
BYU at UTAH STATE POSTGAME NOTES
BYU at UTAH STATE GAME BOOK
The Aggies scored on their opening drive, marching 75 yards down the field on nine plays. Dax Raymond caught a 32-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Kent Myers. Dominik Eberle connected on the PAT to put Utah State up 7-0 four minutes into the game.
Micah Hannemann recorded the Cougars’ first pick-six of the season and the first of his career, returning it 46 yards with 9:08 left in the quarter. It was his fourth career interception and a career-long interception as well. Rhett Almond’s PAT evened the score 7-7.
BYU started off the second quarter with a trick play. Austin Kafentzis took a direct snap and tossed it to Micah Simon, who handed it to Hoge. Hoge then completed a pass to Brayden El-Bakri at the 10-yard line and he took it into the end zone for the 26-yard touchdown. It marked El-Bakri's first career receiving touchdown and the second score of his career. The play put the Cougars up 14-7 nine seconds into the quarter.
After the Cougar defense forced the Aggies to punt, Hoge capped a three-play, 55-yard, 53-second drive by connecting with Beau Tanner on a 40-yard touchdown pass. The scoring play was initially ruled incomplete but a review showed that Tanner got one foot down in the end zone before going out of bounds. Following the PAT, BYU took a 21-7 lead.
Utah State had a pick-six of its own as Jalen Davis grabbed the ball after it bounced off the shoulder pad of a teammate. The score came with 11:02 left in the quarter and closed the gap to 21-14.
The Aggies found the end zone a third time as Myers threw a 26-yard pass to Ron’quavion Tarver, tying the game 21-21 just before halftime. Utah State intercepted the ball less than a minute later, resulting in a 32-yard field goal to give the Aggies their first lead of the night, 24-21.
Utah State recovered a BYU fumble early in the third quarter en route to a 40-yard field goal to extend its advantage, 27-21.
Moments into the fourth quarter, Myers ran 19 yards into the end zone, putting the Aggies up 33-21. They attempted a two-point conversion but the Cougars held firm.
Detmer connected with Jonah Trinnaman on a 39-yard pass to set up a 37-yard field goal from Almond with 12:28 on the clock for a score of 33-24.
Utah State had its second pick-six of the night at the 50-yard line with three minutes left for a final score of 40-24.
The Cougars return home to host Boise State on Friday, Oct. 6, at 8:15 p.m. MDT. That game will be televised on ESPN with radio broadcasts on KSL (1160 AM/102.7 FM) and BYU Radio (Sirius XM 143).