Monday, December 24, 2007

Las Vegas Bowl Recap

Well, here it is, almost 3:30 PM on Christmas Eve, and I'm sitting at work. I was the lucky one who got to work Christmas Eve this year. Oh well...

Anyway, this last weekend, I went down to the Las Vegas Bowl, and my first comment is that it was so worth the $150 it cost me to do it.

BYU played decent in the first half (mostly the second quarter), but didn't score a single point in the second half. Even more frustrating was the last possession that BYU had in the first half. They were pinned on their own 8-yard line with about 20 seconds left. I said to Justin, "Just down the ball and take an 11 point lead into half time (17-6). Instead, BYU decides to run the ball. UCLA strips the ball from Unga, recovers it, then score on an 8-yard touchdown pass. Three point lead instead of 11! I was sure that was going to come back to bite them.

The second half BYU was never able to get very good field position, and couldn't sustain a drive long enough to score. UCLA was in a similar position, but their field goal kicker was good enough that he hit a 52-yarder to make it 17-16. Anyway, then it got down to UCLA's last possession from their own 2-yard line with 2 minutes left. Frustratingly, they were able to get enough little by little to keep the drive alive. Then, they were able to get a 30-yard pass play down to BYU's 10-yard line. They ran 1 more play to get the ball right in the middle of the field. They then let the clock run down and called a timeout with 3 seconds left.

This is where it gets exciting! 28-yard field goal to win the game. BYU's defense got so much penetration trying to block that kick. Ethan Manumaleuna was able to leap up with perfect timing and get a hand on it. The ball still went forward a little bit, but not enough to go through the uprights. The stadium went wild. All of us in my group were screaming and jumping up and down. It was so much fun.

We went down and ran onto the field with about 10,000 other BYU fans. Pure pandemonium, but well worth it.

We went and spent the night at the Palace Station Hotel, then drove home Sunday morning. What a fun weekend, and even more so by the exciting end to the game.

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