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LOGAN — BYU running back Algie Brown scored his second touchdown of the game with 3:02 left in the fourth quarter, and BYU recorded back-to-back wins over Utah State in Logan with a 51-28 victory Saturday afternoon at Maverik Stadium.
Utah State (6-6) opened the scoring with a 52-yard sprint from quarterback Chuckie Keeton, but Brown answered with an 8-yard scoring jaunt just moments later.
But it was Tomasi Laulile's 37-yard fumble return for a touchdown with no time on the clock prior to the halftime break that turned the game on its edge. BYU (9-3) went on a 28-0 scoring spree, spurred by a pair of touchdown catches by Mitch Mathews.
BYU scored 28 straight points bridging the second and third quarters to take a commanding 38-21 lead heading into the final period.
Here are a few quick thoughts on the 85th installment of the Old Wagon Wheel rivalry that saw the Cougars improve to 47-35-3 all-time against its in-state opponent.
Mitch Mathews likes to play in Logan
The last time Mathews played at Utah State, the then-sophomore caught five passes for 112 yards and three touchdowns, including his first collegiate score. The senior went out with a bang with plenty of aunts and uncles watching in Maverik Stadium, hauling in six passes for 158 yards and two scores, pacing a run of 21 straight points to put BYU up 31-21 with 13:40 left in the third quarter.
Another memorable day on offense came to Herriman High alum Francis Bernard, who finished with two touchdowns and his third since the Mustangs won their first-ever Class 5A state title, including a touchdown to cap BYU's run at 28-0 late in the third quarter.
Welcome back, Chuck
Keeton made his first start since Sept. 19 at Washington, a 31-17 loss and a Keeton injury that led to sophomore Kent Myers getting the start for the next eight games.
But on Senior Day in Logan, Myers was sidelined with an injury and Keeton scampered in on a 42-yard sprint to score on the Aggies' first offensive series. The fifth-year senior from Houston became the first player to score against BYU on the opening drive since Nebraska did it Sept. 5.
Keeton finished with 54 yards and a touchdown on nine rushes, and also completed 20-of-45 passes for 243 yards and a score. He became Utah State's all-time leader in career touchdowns with 61 on his rushing attempt in the first quarter.
A Senior Day to forget
Utah State celebrated its seniors Saturday, but junior place-kicker Jake Thompson had one forgettable afternoon. The 6-foot Logan High graduate missed three field-goal attempts from 40 yards or closer, including one that was returned by Micah Hannemann to the 10-yard line. Bernard plunged the remainder of the way into the end zone, capping a 28-0 run by BYU to give the Cougars a 38-21 lead with 3:01 left in the third quarter.