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Davis, California

Tuesday, February 20, 2024

Aggies rusty against Vikings in 51-29 loss


UC Davis football loses big against Portland State

Coming off a bye week, the UC Davis football team fell to the Portland State Vikings, 51-29, after a dismal performance at Aggie Stadium on Saturday.

UC Davis struggled in Saturday’s showdown, gaining just over 400 yards on offense while allowing over 600 yards to Portland State. In comparison, the UC Davis defense has only allowed an average of under 300 yards in the last three games. The Aggies have led with the fewest penalties in the conference this season with just 46.8 penalty yards per game, but they received nine penalties for 68 yards against the Vikings.

“They just outplayed us,” head coach Ron Gould said. “[Personal fouls] are very uncharacteristic of our team, it’s just something we don’t do. […] It’s unacceptable, but we’re going to correct it.”

UC Davis received the ball to start the game but couldn’t get anything going on its first drive. The Vikings then took advantage of their starting drive to get a quick touchdown, putting them up 7-0 early in the first quarter.


The Aggies marched 75 yards downfield and responded with a touchdown pass from senior quarterback Ben Scott to freshman wide receiver Jared Harrell. However, freshman kicker Matt Blair missed the extra point, making it 7-6. Portland State then extended its lead to 10-6 with a 22-yard field goal that was followed by another touchdown to further extend its lead to 17-6.

UC Davis then fumbled the ball in Vikings’ territory, leading to a Portland State touchdown that made it 24-6. The Aggies were held to a field goal that cut the Vikings’ lead to 24-9, but Portland State responded with a field goal of its own though, which put the Vikings back up by 18.

Though Scott’s pass to sophomore wide receiver Keelan Doss in the endzone cut the Vikings’ lead to 27-16, the Vikings could not be stopped and scored a quick field goal to end the half with a 30-16 lead.

Portland State came out of halftime with two quick touchdowns to extend its lead once more to 44-16. The Ags looked disoriented as they tried to go for it on fourth down in the red zone, but Scott ended up throwing an interception instead. On the Vikings’ ensuing possession, the Ags came up with a big sack from junior linebacker Ryan Bua and a blocked field goal attempt deep in their own territory.

Three penalties targeting and personal fouls during three consecutive plays on the UC Davis defense led to a Vikings’


touchdown for a whopping 51-16 lead.

Junior quarterback CJ Spencer came in for the Ags to replace Scott near the middle of the fourth quarter and threw a 14-yard

touchdown pass to Harrell, and another extra point miss by Blair made the score 51-22.

UC Davis then recovered its own onside kick but still couldn’t convert on fourth down. In the final minute of the game, Spencer took it to the house to finish off the scoring.

After the game, Spencer commented on how the Ags just could not get it done.

“We just didn’t capitalize when we needed to capitalize,” Spencer said. “We just have to bounce back and not let this game dictate our future and just keep going and look forward.”

The Aggies hit the road to face Big Sky Conference opponent Montana State this Saturday and return to Aggie Stadium for the Causeway Classic against Sacramento State on Nov. 19 at 1 p.m. to finish out the season.


Written by: Nicolette Sarmiento sports@theaggie.org


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