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(Saturday, September 21)
Final Score: USC 17, Utah State 14
Los Angeles, CA (Sports Network) - Tre Madden rushed for 93 yards and a touchdown to help lead the USC Trojans to a 17-14 win over the Utah State Aggies in a non-conference bout at Los Angeles Coliseum.
Although Madden averaged less than four yards per carry, his 24 attempts helped USC (3-1) control the tempo. Cody Kessler completed just 13-of-27 passes for 164 yards, but he threw a touchdown pass and did not turn the ball over. Marqise Lee led all receivers with six receptions for 72 yards.
For Utah State (2-2), Chuckie Keeton was 21-of-39 for 179 yards with two touchdowns and no picks. Travis Reynolds hauled in five passes for 70 yards and a score, while Joey DeMartino (72 yards) and Joe Hill (51 yards) were both effective in the ground game on a combined 14 carries.
USC was responsible for the only first-quarter score, as Madden converted a one-yard touchdown plunge to give the Trojans an early lead.
Utah State answered early in the second quarter when Keeton hooked up with Brandon Swindall on an eight-yard touchdown, but USC regained the advantage midway through the frame on a 30-yard scoring strike from Kessler to Xavier Grimble.
The Aggies tied the game up midway through the third quarter on another Keeton touchdown pass, this time a 10-yarder to Reynolds.
The Trojans were handed great field position late in the third quarter, but after starting the drive on Utah State's 24-yard line, they stalled and had to settle for a 25-yard field goal by Andre Heidari to take a 17-14 lead with 13:35 left in the game.
Utah State was driving with under four minutes to play, but it failed to convert a 4th-and-9 in USC territory. The Trojans ran out the clock from there to hold on for the win.
Neither team topped 285 total yards of offense. The USC defense made 10 tackles behind the line of scrimmage, with Morgan Breslin recording two sacks.
09/21 19:26:53 ET