Dorian Thompson-Robinson threw for two touchdowns and ran for another, Devin Kirkwood came up with a critical interception inside the final 5 minutes, and UCLA beat Washington 24-17
SEATTLE — Dorian Thompson-Robinson threw for two touchdowns and ran for another, Devin Kirkwood came up with a critical interception inside the final 5 minutes, and UCLA beat Washington 24-17 on Saturday night.
Zach Charbonnet rushed for 131 yards and the Bruins (5-2, 3-1 Pac-12) won their second straight on the road, remaining right in the middle of the Pac-12 South Division race.
Thompson-Robinson threw a 9-yard touchdown pass to Greg Dulcich for what turned out to be the winning score with 8:19 remaining, capping a 90-yard scoring drive. He also threw a 17-yard TD to Kam Brown in the first quarter and had a 1-yard TD run late in the first half.
Thompson-Robinson was 21-of-26 passing for 183 yards and added another 87 yards rushing. His last run came with 2:01 left when he sprinted 8 yards for first down after Washington used its final timeout.
And when UCLA needed a big defensive play in the closing minutes, Kirkwood came through. Kirkwood intercepted Washington quarterback Dylan Morris at the UCLA 4 with 4:50 remaining. Morris had Jalen McMillian open for a potential touchdown, but didn’t lead him enough and Kirkwood made an excellent recovery, juggling and then securing the ball.
It was the second time Morris was picked off after getting intercepted on Washington’s opening drive of the game. Morris was 20-of-30 passing for 184 yards, but the Huskies failed to rebound after losing in overtime at Oregon State two weeks ago.
The Huskies (2-4, 1-2) are two games under .500 this late in the season for the first time since 2015 when Washington was 4-6 in mid-November before winning its final two games to become bowl eligible.
Thompson-Robinson was the catalyst of everything the Bruins did on offense, but especially the winning drive. Thompson-Robinson was 8-for-8 passing for 47 yards and added another 10 yards on the ground, including a key fourth-and-1 conversion.
UCLA took a 17-3 lead after Thompson-Robinson scored on a 1-yard keeper on fourth-and-goal late in the first half. But the Huskies put together a critical drive in the closing moments of the half and pulled within 17-10 at the break on Rome Odunze’s 26-yard TD reception with 52 seconds left in the half.
Washington carried the momentum into the second half, getting a stop on UCLA’s opening possession and pulling even at 17-17 when Morris scored on his own fourth-down keeper from the 1.
Despite rallying from the 10-point deficit, Washington’s offense was mostly a dud. The Huskies finished with a season-low 267 yards.
Washington got a spark with the return of pass rusher Zion Tupuola-Fetui six months after he suffered a torn Achilles tendon in spring practice. Tupuola-Fetui was well ahead of schedule in his recovery and was cleared to return to practice during Washington’s bye week.
Tupuola-Fetui made an impact almost immediately, flushing Thompson-Robinson on his first snap and recording a QB hit. Tupuola-Fetui played in a small number of mostly passing situations.
Tupuola-Fetui made a splash last season with seven sacks in just three games during the truncated 2020 season.
UCLA: The Bruins return home to host Oregon next Saturday.
Washington: The Huskies have a short week and travel to Arizona on Friday.
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