BYU Holds On To Beat Arizona 28-23

Sep 5, 2018, 6:06 PM | Updated: Sep 6, 2018, 6:22 pm

TUCSON, Arizona – The BYU Cougars started the season off on the right foot with a thrilling 28-23 win at Arizona Saturday night in the desert.

The Cougars held an 18-point lead going into the final quarter and nearly saw it slip it away as Arizona scored 13-points in the fourth, but were unable to catch the Cougars as BYU escaped with the win.

Tanner Mangum out-played preseason Heisman hopeful Khalil Tate by completing 18-of-28 throws for 209 yards and one touchdown. In what seemed to be a strange and ineffective strategy, Arizona implemented a pass-heavy strategy with preseason Heisman hopeful quarterback Khalil Tate. A strong runner, Tate seldom took off on the ground and was limited to just 14 yards on eight rushes. He was also sacked once by Corbin Kaufusi. Through the air, he was 17-of-34 for 197 yards and one touchdown

After a scoreless first quarter for both teams, BYU opened up the scoring with a goal line rush by Squally Canada at the 9:59 mark of the second quarter. Arizona followed with a field goal on their next possession and then scored their first touchdown of the year on a 15-yard connection from Khalil Tate to Tony Ellison to take a 10-7 lead into the halftime break.

Midway through the third, the Cougars retook the lead with a play-action pass from Magnum to Tucson-native Matt Bushman to snag a 14-10 advantage. Mangum was especially impressive on that scoring drive, going a perfect 6-for-6, including the touchdown toss. Squally Canada then scored rushing touchdowns on back-to-back possessions to give BYU a commanding 28-10 lead going into the final quarter.

Arizona finally responded after 21 straight points by BYU with a 2-yard touchdown run by Tate to cut the lead to 28-17. J.J. Taylor leapt into the end zone at the 3:20 to cut the lead to 28-23. The Wildcats then went for the 2-point conversion and failed. That was as close as the Wildcats would get in the season-opening win for BYU.

The Cougars will turn their sights to another Pac-12 opponent, Cal. The two teams will meet Saturday, September 8 at 8:15 p.m. at Lavell Edwards Stadium.

  • BYU Cougars Scoreboard

  • BYU Cougars Team Leaders

  • BYU Cougars Standings

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