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Arizona falls to No. 3 Oregon 41-19

Courtesy: Associated Press
Posted at 12:05 AM, Sep 26, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-26 03:05:51-04

EUGENE, Oregon — Anthony Brown threw for 206 yards and three touchdowns, and No. 3 Oregon handed Arizona its 16th straight loss with a 41-19 victory on Saturday night.

Oregon (4-0, 1-0 Pac-12) extended its winning streak at Autzen Stadium to 15 games. The Ducks are the lone undefeated team left in the Pac-12.

Despite being winless this season, the Wildcats (0-4, 0-1) closed to within 24-19 late in the third quarter on Drake Anderson’s 1-yard touchdown run.

Oregon extended its lead with Camden Lewis’ 43-yard field goal early in the fourth quarter, then added Brown’s 18-yard scoring pass to Spencer Webb to make it 34-19 with 8:26 left.

The Ducks put it away on Bennett Williams’ 68-yard interception return for a touchdown on Arizona’s ensuing series.

The Ducks got off to a quick start, with Brown’s pass to Jaylon Redd for a 63-yard touchdown just more than a minute into the game. Then Oregon intercepted Arizona starter Jordan McCloud on the Wildcats’ first series.

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Arizona’s depth chart this week included all three quarterbacks as possible starters.: Will Plummer, Gunner Cruz and McCloud.

Plummer started last weekend’s loss to Northern Arizona, throwing for 191 yards and a touchdown. McCloud was inserted in the fourth quarter, throwing for 66 yards and a score.

It was clear from pre-game warmups that Plummer was nursing an injury. McCloud started and threw for 233 yards and a touchdown, but was intercepted five times.

Lewis gave the Ducks a 10-0 lead with a 21-yard field goal, and Arizona answered with McCloud’s 11-yard scoring pass to tight end Bryce Wolma.

CJ Verdell scored on an 11-yard run for the Ducks before the opening quarter was over. Brown’s 9-yard scoring pass to Terrance Ferguson gave the Ducks a 24-7 lead.

Lucas Havrisik’s 28-yard field goal made it 24-10 with 4:24 left in the half.

Mo Diallo’s safety and Anderson’s touchdown run narrowed the margin in the third quarter.

Oregon was favored by more than four touchdowns in the game, according to FanDuel Sportsbook. But Arizona had surprised the Ducks before: The Wildcats’ last victory over a ranked opponent was in 2018, when they routed No. 19 Oregon 44-15. In 2014, Arizona beat No. 2 Oregon 31-24 in Eugene.

Arizona’s losing streak is the longest currently in FBS.

THE TAKEAWAY

Arizona: The Wildcats were without defensive end Mo Diallo and safety Jaxen Turner for the first half of the game because of targeting calls last week in a loss to NAU.

Oregon: Verone McKinley III had his fourth interception of the season early in the second half. He leads the Pac-12. He’s the first Oregon player with an interception in three straight games since the 2012 season.

THIBODEAUX’S BRIEF RETURN

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The Ducks saw the return of defensive end Kayvon Thibodeaux, who hadn’t played since injured his ankle in the opener. Thibodeaux, who is considered a top pick in the NFL draft next year if he decides to go pro, came into the game midway through the first quarter. However, he did not return in the second half after he appeared to aggravate his ankle injury.

UP NEXT

Arizona is going into a bye week before hosting UCLA (3-1, 1-0) on Oct. 9.

Oregon visits Stanford next Saturday. The Cardinal (2-2, 1-1) fell to the Bruins 35-24 earlier Saturday.