2018 Sun Devil Bowl Guide

17 H Y U N D A I S U N B O W L | D E C . 2 9 , 2 0 1 7 A R I Z O N A S T A T E F O O T B A L L 2 0 1 7 B O W L G U I D E Arizona State saw its two-game winning streak against UCLA snapped on Saturday night at the Rose Bowl, unable to complete a late rally in a 44-37 defeat. The Sun Devil special teams unit tallied 16 points in a second-half comeback, but a failed onside kick attempt with just over one minute remaining allowed the Bruins to escape the shootout with a victory. Eno Benjamin was able to find the end zone in a unique way, his second time in as many games. The freshman returned a block for a touchdown in the second half, the first time a Sun Devil had done so since 2010. Quarterback Manny Wilkins also shined on Saturday, totaling 325 yards and two touchdowns - one coming on a dazzling hurdling play late in the first half. Senior Demario Richard continued his impressive play as of late, carrying the ball 21 times for 125 yards and a score - his second consecutive game over the century mark. As a team, the Sun Devils rushed for 294 yards in the contest and now have 675 rushing yards in their last two games. Behind a hot start fromWilkins and a timely Chad Adams interception, the Sun Devils were able to capitalize on some early momentum in this one and jump out to an early 14-point lead. The first scoring drive of the evening went 50 yards and took just over 90 seconds as a precise Wilkins completed each of the three passes he threw. The last of those found an open N’Keal Harry in the back of the end zone, putting the visiting team on top first. UCLA ran all of two plays on its next possession, the drive coming to a halt as Adams adjusted on a tipped Josh Rosen pass to grab his second interception in as many games. The offense didn’t let the takeaway go to waste, using a methodical drive that featured 11 rushes on 12 plays before Richard found the goal line from two yards out. It was Arizona State’s third and final touchdown of the half, however, that was most memorable. Facing a third down on the Bruin 16-yard line, Wilkins called his own number and ran 13 yards untouched before finding the only defender between him and the goal line. The signal caller promptly hurdled the last line of defense with ease, giving his team the score that led to a 21-20 advantage at the half. The 21 first half points marked the team’s highest-scoring first two quarters of the season. But while the first 30 minutes of Saturday’s game belonged to the Sun Devil offense, it was their special teams unit that dominated the second half. Freshman Brandon Ruiz answered two UCLA touchdowns with a pair of 22-yard field goals to start the frame, and later it was freshman Eno Benjamin who scooped up a Malik Lawal punt block before taking it all the way back to tie the game at 34- 34. The Bruins ultimately grabbed the lead back at 44-34, but Ruiz finished his night with one last field goal to cut the final deficit to seven. Arizona State finished the contest with an edge in total yards (584- 573) and outgained UCLA on the ground by over 100 yards. The Sun Devils also scored on all six of their trips to the red zone, improving to 36-of-37 in red zone conversions on the season. GAME 10 | 11 .11 .17 ROSE BOWL STADIUM • PASADENA, CALIF. UCLA 44 ARIZONA STATE 37