ARIZONA WILDCATS FOOTBALL

Arizona extends losing skid to 18 with loss to Colorado

Oct 16, 2021, 4:33 PM
Arizona quarterback Gunner Cruz rolls out to pass the ball against Colorado in the first half of an...

Arizona quarterback Gunner Cruz rolls out to pass the ball against Colorado in the first half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Oct. 16, 2021, in Boulder, Colo. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

(AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

BOULDER, Colo. (AP) — The Colorado Buffaloes scored touchdowns on a blocked punt and an interception in their 34-0 win over Arizona on Saturday that extended the nation’s longest losing streak to 18 games.

Stumbling since a season-opening rout of Northern Colorado, the Buffaloes (2-4, 1-2 Pac-12) shook off their four-game losing streak thanks to Trevor Woods’ 36 -yard scoop-and-score of the punt he blocked and defensive end Carson Wells’ 50-yard interception return for a touchdown on consecutive Arizona possessions.

Brendon Lewis followed up with a 62-yard scoring strike to Brenden Rice that put Colorado ahead 27-0 late in the third quarter.

Lewis finished 12 of 19 for 248 yards and two touchdowns and Rice caught three passes for 111 yards.

The Buffs managed just two first-half field goals against an Arizona team that hasn’t won since beating Colorado 35-30 win at Folsom Field on Oct. 5, 2019.

The Wildcats (0-6, 0-3) had played better in recent weeks, keeping No. 9 Oregon and UCLA close until the fourth quarter but this one blew up on them in the third.

The Wildcats turned back to redshirt freshman Gunner Cruz after losing starting quarterback Jordan McCloud to season-ending ankle and knee injuries last week. By the fourth quarter, the Wildcats had turned to fellow freshman Will Plummer.

Neither was effective: Cruz was 13 of 22 for 82 yards and Plummer 7 of 17 for 71 yards.

This was the West’s version of the UMass-UConn game earlier this month that pitted two winless FBC independents, and for much of the afternoon it was the snooze fest everyone expected.

The first half featured almost as many punts (five) as points as the Buffs took a 6-0 lead into the locker room on the strength of two Cole Becker field goals and a goal line stand.

The Wildcats were stuffed for no gain on three straight runs from the Colorado 1 late in the first half. Arizona coach Jedd Fisch called timeout and called for a fourth-down rollout.

Pressured by linebacker Nate Landman, Cruz misfired his pass to Stanley Berryhill in the end zone. The Buffs took over at their 1 and a defensive holding call gave them some breathing room and allowed them to run out the clock.

Colorado also faced fourth-and-goal from the 1 in the first half, but coach Karl Dorrell sent out his kicker much to the chagrin of the crowd of 49,806.

Becker’s 19-yard field goal gave the Buffs their first opening drive score of the season and Dorrell’s decision looked much better through the lens of Colorado’s second drive that ended in a turnover on downs.

Running back Alex Fontenot was stuffed for no gain on fourth-and-1 from the Arizona 30-yard line.

Fontenot set up Becker’s second field goal, from 37 yards out, by hauling in a 43-yard pass at the Arizona 24. Lewis uncorked the pass while under extreme pressure.

Not unexpectedly, the punters had some of the better plays for both teams.

Arizona’s Kyle Ostendorp buried the Buffs at their own 3 with a perfectly placed 42-yard punt in the first half and Josh Watts followed that by getting Colorado out of trouble with a 64-yard punt out of his own end zone.

In the first half, the teams combined for nine plays in the red zone and they netted just a dozen yards, all by Colorado.

The Buffs went three-and-out on their first two drives after the break but their defense and special teams helped them break away for a rare rout at Folsom Field.

Lewis capped his big day with an 11-yard touchdown toss to Dimitri Stanley, and Colorado preserved the shutout when cornerback Nikko Reed broke up Plummer’s fourth-down pass to Jalen Johnson in the end zone with a minute remaining.

UP NEXT

Arizona: Hosts Washington on Friday night, Oct. 22.

Colorado: Visits the California Bears on Oct. 23.

Arizona Wildcats football

Tampa Bay Buccaneers tight end Rob Gronkowski (87) tries to elude Kansas City Chiefs strong safety ...
Henry Schleizer

A look at the Arizona sports connections on Super Bowl LV teams

When the Buccaneers take on the Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowl LV, players and coaches with Arizona ties will be suiting up for both teams. 
10 months ago
UCLA running back Demetric Felton carries against Arizona during the first half of an NCAA college ...
Associated Press

Demetric Felton runs for career-high 206 yards as UCLA beats Arizona

Demetric Felton rushed for a career-high 206 yards and a touchdown as UCLA defeated Arizona 27-10 at the Rose Bowl Saturday night.
1 year ago
(Photo by Jacob Snow/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)...
Arizona Sports

Arizona Wildcats set to return to sports after false coronavirus positives

The Arizona Wildcats could be returning to athletic activities next week after 11 of the school's 13 coronavirus retests came back as false positives.
1 year ago
Arizona running back J.J. Taylor, celebrates as he crosses the goal line on a 40 yard touchdown run...
Alex Weiner

Arizona’s defense faces major test against red hot Texas Tech

The Wildcats will face their first power-five conference opponent, 2-0 Texas Tech, in Tucson on Saturday. Arizona could make a huge statement with a win.
2 years ago
(Twitter photo: @davidwskinner_)...
Arizona Sports

Sun Devils, Wildcats scuffle ahead of Territorial Cup

There have been two skirmishes already on the field between the Arizona State Sun Devils and Arizona ahead of the Territorial Cup. teams in pregame warmups.
3 years ago
Arizona quarterback Khalil Tate celebrates after running for a touchdown against Colorado in the fi...
Joe Jacquez

Arizona football preview: Tate and the Wildcats face Rosen and the Bruins

The Arizona Wildcats will square off against Josh Rosen and the UCLA Bruins at Arizona Stadium in Tucson on Saturday night.
4 years ago
Arizona extends losing skid to 18 with loss to Colorado