BYU reclaims Old Wagon Wheel and routs Utah State in 42-14 win

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LOGAN — It didn’t take long for the BYU Cougars to score against in-state rival Utah State, and the Cougars never looked back as they beat Utah State 42-14 Saturday.

“It was good,” BYU (4-4) head coach Kalani Sitake said after the win. “We left some points on the field and could have caused more havoc on defense, but for the most part all three phases I was really happy.”

The Cougar defense forced Utah State (4-4) quarterback Jordan Love and the Aggie offense to be out of sync all night long. BYU forced five turnovers on the night and three of those were interceptions thrown by Love who finished the night throwing for 394 yards and one touchdown on 29-of-49 passing.

“It feels awesome,” said linebacker Isaiah Kaufusi. “A lot of guys, we were talking at dinner, and a lot of guys haven’t beaten Utah State. We’re really young and the older guys, we beat them in 2016 — I was a redshirt then. To come out with the win is just awesome. A lot of the guys are really excited about it and it was just fun to get the win.”

Jaren Hall started the game for the Cougars and led them to a 21-14 lead at halftime before he had to leave the game and enter concussion protocol. He finished his night throwing for 214 yards. He also ran for two touchdowns.

Baylor Romney, who came in to replace Hall, finished the night throwing for 191 yards on 10-of-16 passing. He threw two touchdowns, including one to his brother Gunner Romney, and had one interception.

“We just got to keep building on it,” Sitake said. “We had a fumble in the red zone that I didn’t like, but I liked the way of our aggressive nature. I liked the way they were blocking. We had some new bodies in there and I thought Lopini (Katoa) and Sione (Finau) did a great job running the ball.”

“It feels good, those are our true colors,” Katoa said. “We know we can do that week in and week out, so the fact that we came and put it together today was huge for us.”

Katoa finished his night with 171 yards of total offense and one touchdown, a 77-yard reception in the fourth quarter, in the win.

“It’s huge for us,” Kaufusi said. “I think it’s a huge momentum booster for us. Coming off the wins from Boise and Utah State I think guys are confident and a lot of guys have stepped up and are playing really well, so I think it’ll continue to happen.”

The Cougars will host Liberty next weekend at LaVell Edwards Stadium at 5:30 p.m. MST.

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