QB Modster leads UCLA surge past Cal
Reserve quarterback Devon Modster replaced Josh Rosen in the second half and led three UCLA scoring drives, including the game-winner, in a 30-27 victory over California on Friday at the Rose Bowl.
Modster drove UCLA (6-6, 4-5 Pac-12) 55 yards in 2:14, and kicker J.J. Molson made a 37-yard field goal to complete a perfect season at home and seal bowl eligibility.
The Bruins — playing under interim coach Jedd Fisch, filling in for the recently fired Jim Mora — went ahead 17-6 in the first half when Rosen threw a pair of touchdown passes. He found wide receiver Theo Howard on a 14-yard scoring strike and Jordan Lasley on a 17-yarder to make three consecutive games in which Rosen and Lasley hooked up on a touchdown.
Lasley also set a career high for receiving yards for a third straight game, his 12 catches for 227 yards breaking the 204-yard output he had on Nov. 18 at USC. Lasley played a crucial role in each of the first two scoring drives led by Modster, who replaced Rosen after the junior was violently thrown to the turf in the late second quarter.
Lasley receptions of 37 and 41 yards put UCLA in Cal territory on possessions that resulted in a 1-yard Brandon Stephens touchdown run and a 26-yard Molson field goal.
UCLA led by 10 points in the second half, but Cal battled back. Quarterback Ross Bowers found wide receiver Jordan Veasy on a 6-yard touchdown pass, capping a 12-play, 77-yard drive to force a tie with 2:22 remaining.
Cal (5-7, 2-7 Pac-12 Conference) previously forced a 17-17 tie when Bowers rushed in a touchdown of 2 yards following a Patrick Laird run of 19 yards that included him hurdling a defender. Laird rushed for 178 yards on 32 carries.