(Photo by Mark Philbrick/BYU Photo)
ARLINGTON, Texas - The BYU football team suffered from turnovers and mistakes, falling to the TCU Horned Frogs 38-28 on Friday at Cowboys Stadium in front of 50,094 fans.
BYU (6-3) outgained TCU (6-2) 354 total yards to 283 but couldn’t overcome three turnovers, two of which came in the red zone. Quarterback Riley Nelson
threw for 215 yards and one touchdown and added another 84 yards rushing but threw two interceptions.
Running back JJ Di Luigi
rushed for 69 yards on 11 carries and punt returner JD Falslev
returned a punt 67 yards for a touchdown but it wasn’t enough for the Cougars.
TCU got two touchdowns in the first five minutes of play, scoring on their second play of the game on a 48-yard strike to a wide open Skye Dawson for a touchdown. The Horned Frogs rushed for another touchdown on their next possession after getting the ball at the BYU 4-yard line on a fumbled snap to the punter.
The Cougars got on the board on their next possession. Nelson found wide receiver Ross Apo
for a 42-yard gain, helping to set up a 43-yard field goal from Justin Sorensen
, bringing the lead to 14-3 with 7:14 to go in the first quarter.
BYU cut into the lead again on their next drive when running back Michael Alisa
caught a 22-yard touchdown pass over the middle of the field from Nelson. With the score and PAT, the Cougars trimmed the lead to 14-10.
TCU capitalized on good field position again after just a 23-yard punt from BYU. The Horned Frogs scored on another rushing touchdown, this time from two yards out to push the lead to 21-10 with 6:57 remaining until halftime.
On another quick strike, TCU picked up a touchdown before the break. Wide receiver Josh Boyce scored on a 33-yard touchdown reception with 36 seconds before the half. The Horned Frogs’ drive lasted just 13 seconds and gave them a 28-10 lead going into halftime.
Special teams for BYU struggled again in the second half, fumbling another snap on a punt, setting TCU up with possession at the BYU 37-yard line. Four players later the Horned Frogs got another touchdown and a 35-10 lead with 8:36 left in the third quarter.
Sorensen tried his best to chip away at the lead, hitting his second 40-plus-yard field goal, this time from 44-yards out to make it 35-13 with 4:13 on the clock in the third quarter.
BYU wasn’t going away that easy, however. After forcing a three-and-out on TCU’s next possession, the special teams had some redemption when Falslev took the ensuing punt 67 yards to the house for a touchdown to cut the lead down to 35-20.
After the Horned Frogs tacked on a field goal, the Cougars got one more score on a 1-yard touchdown run from Bryan Kariya
. Nelson ran in the two-point conversion to bring the score to 38-28 with two minutes left in the game.
BYU gets a week off and returns to LaVell Edwards Stadium to play the Idaho Vandals on Saturday, Nov. 12. Time and television details will be announced early next week.