Fifita, Arizona lead USC in shootout at halftime
Oct 7, 2023, 9:21 PM
(Photo by Katelyn Mulcahy/Getty Images)
Arizona Wildcats quarterback Noah Fifita is doing his best not to miss a beat with starter Jayden de Laura sidelined.
Fifita and Arizona took a 17-14 lead against No. 9 USC into halftime at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum behind two touchdown passes by the redshirt freshman.
Fifita was 16-for-22 for 219 yards, two touchdowns and an interception in the first half.
.@TMclachlan12 FINDS THE END ZONE 😼
2nd TD of the night!!! Wildcats extend their lead 17-0.
📺: ESPN pic.twitter.com/FFgFjV0GTt
— Arizona Football (@ArizonaFBall) October 8, 2023
He found Tetairoa McMillan five times for 117 yards and Jacob Cowing five times for 39 yards and a score. Tanner McLachlan also had three catches, 28 yards and a score.
The Wildcats led 17-0 as late as midway through the second quarter before the Trojans came storming back.
Fifita’s interception came not only at an inopportune time, but at an inopportune place on the field.
Arizona’s defense had forced a fumble of 2022 Heisman Trophy winner and Trojans QB Caleb Williams on USC’s end of the field. However, on the ensuing play, Fifita threw an interception that was returned inside the Southern California 20. USC would score two plays later on a Williams scramble.
After the two teams exchanged punts, USC would use six plays to go 66 yards to score its second touchdown and draw within a field goal before the first-half whistle.