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D.J. Uiagalelei throws 5 TD passes to lead No. 15 Oregon State to a 52-40 win over California

By Tim Martinez, Columbian Assistant Sports Editor
Published: October 7, 2023, 10:47pm

BERKELEY, Calif. (AP) — D.J. Uiagalelei threw three of his five touchdown passes to Jack Velling and No. 15 Oregon State beat California 52-40 on Saturday night.

The Beavers (5-1, 2-1 Pac-12) struggled to slow down the Golden Bears (3-2, 1-2) for most of the night but did more than enough offensively to get off to their best start to a season since 2013.

Uiagalelei completed 19 of 25 passes for 275 yards, backup Aidan Chiles threw a TD pass on a one drive cameo in the first half and Damien Martinez ran for 89 yards and a score.

Oregon State scored touchdowns on five straight drives and pulled away with two TDs in the opening three minutes of the fourth quarter to open up a 49-32 lead.

Martinez scored on a 1-yard run on fourth down and then Uiagalelei found defensive lineman Isaac Hodgins for a 2-yard score following a fumble by Ashton Stredick.

Fernando Mendoza threw two TD passes in his first start and Isaiah Infanse scored three times for the Bears, who haven’t beaten a ranked team since the 2020 season.

The Beavers led 14-3 when a bold decision backfired and quickly put them in a hole. Coach Jonathan Smith called for a surprise onside kick that Ryan McCulloch recovered and returned to the 19. That set up a 9-yard TD pass from Mendoza to Infanse.

Silas Bolden then lost a fumble on the first play of the next drive and Cal turned that into a 1-yard TD run for Infanse and a 17-14 lead.

Smith remained aggressive and it paid off late in the first half when Uiagalelei found Velling for his second TD of the game on fourth down from the 3 to give the Beavers a 21-17 lead at the half.

Both teams scored twice on their only possessions of the third quarter before the Beavers took control in the fourth.

THE TAKEAWAY

Oregon State: The Beavers came into the game fifth in the nation in run defense but were gashed for 128 yards in the first half with starters James Rawls and Calvin Hart Jr. serving a penalty for targeting last week. They gave up 241 yards rushing for the game.

California: The Bears went to their third starting QB of the season with Mendoza getting the nod over Sam Jackson V and Ben Finley. Mendoza played well but it wasn’t enough as Cal started a stretch of five straight games against teams currently in the AP poll with a loss.

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UP NEXT

Oregon State: Hosts UCLA on Saturday night.

California: Visits Utah on Saturday.

No. 15 Oregon State 52, California 40

Oregon St. 7 14 14 17 52
California 0 17 15 8 40

First Quarter

ORST_Velling 2 pass from Uiagalelei (Sappington kick), 7:42.

Second Quarter

CAL_FG Bhaghani 20, 14:58.

ORST_Bolden 11 pass from Chiles (Sappington kick), 12:24.

CAL_Ifanse 9 pass from Mendoza (Bhaghani kick), 11:16.

CAL_Ifanse 1 run (Bhaghani kick), 8:09.

ORST_Velling 3 pass from Uiagalelei (Sappington kick), 2:00.

Third Quarter

ORST_Irish 38 pass from Uiagalelei (Sappington kick), 13:32.

CAL_Ifanse 5 run (Bhaghani kick), 9:53.

ORST_Velling 7 pass from Uiagalelei (Sappington kick), 5:40.

CAL_Endries 30 pass from Mendoza (J.Hunter pass from Mendoza), 2:45.

Fourth Quarter

ORST_Martinez 1 run (Sappington kick), 14:25.

ORST_Hodgins 2 pass from Uiagalelei (Sappington kick), 12:32.

ORST_FG Sappington 32, 2:25.

CAL_J.Thomas 9 run (Grizzell pass from Mendoza), 1:04.

ORST CAL
First downs 24 21
Total Net Yards 498 448
Rushes-yards 43-202 33-241
Passing 296 207
Punt Returns 0-0 1-8
Kickoff Returns 6-139 1-26
Interceptions Ret. 1-0 0-0
Comp-Att-Int 21-28-0 21-32-1
Sacked-Yards Lost 0-0 0-0
Punts 1-50.0 2-36.0
Fumbles-Lost 1-1 1-1
Penalties-Yards 5-55 3-25
Time of Possession 37:17 22:43

INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS

RUSHING_Oregon St., Martinez 17-89, Fenwick 15-76, Uiagalelei 5-14, Bolden 1-11, Irish 1-11, Newell 1-3, Gould 1-1, (Team) 2-(minus 3). California, Ifanse 11-86, Ott 13-85, Mendoza 4-41, Stredick 3-17, J.Thomas 2-12.

PASSING_Oregon St., Uiagalelei 19-25-0-275, Chiles 2-2-0-21, Fenwick 0-1-0-0. California, Mendoza 21-32-1-207.

RECEIVING_Oregon St., Gould 7-117, Velling 4-38, Bolden 3-34, Irish 2-53, Noga 1-22, Martinez 1-16, Fenwick 1-8, Terry 1-6, Hodgins 1-2. California, Davis 6-63, Endries 4-66, J.Hunter 4-18, Grizzell 2-38, Ifanse 1-9, M.Young 1-9, Alberding 1-5, J.Thomas 1-2, Ott 1-(minus 3).

MISSED FIELD GOALS_None.

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