The ASU football team scored 28 unanswered points in the third quarter to beat USC 62-41 and earn their first conference victory of the season.
The Trojans (3-2, 0-2 Pac-12) came out fighting to start the second half, taking only three plays to go 75 yards and regain the lead 21-20. The drive was keyed by a 51 yard pass from redshirt sophomore quarterback Cody Kessler to junior receiver Marqise Lee then redshirt sophomore running back Tre Madden scored a 24 yard run on the next play.
The Sun Devils (3-1, 1-1 Pac-12) struck back quickly, though. Redshirt junior quarterback Taylor Kelly connected with sophomore running back D.J. Foster on a 74-yard touchdown grab over the middle on the second play of the next drive to give the Sun Devils a 27-21 lead.
Senior safety Alden Darby extended the Sun Devils’ lead to 34-21 on the next Trojans possession, picking off Kessler and returning it 46 yards down the sideline, his second pick six in as many years against the Trojans.
After USC went three-and-out, the Sun Devils scored again, capping off a six play, 55 yard drive on a eight-yard touchdown pass from Kelly to senior running back Marion Grice to push the lead to 41-21.
USC turned the ball over on downs on their next possession, but the Sun Devils were unable to capitalize as Trojans freshman safety Su’a Cravens intercepted Kelly.
The Trojans continued to make mistakes on their next drive and Darby made them pay, picking off Madden on fourth down for his second interception of the quarter.
ASU was able to capitalize on this Trojans turnover, capping off a four-play drive with a nine-yard touchdown run by Grice to make the score 48-21 Sun Devils.
After trading scoreless possessions, Kessler hit Madden for a 48-yard touchdown pass on third down to bring the Trojans within 48-27 at the 13:11 mark of the fourth quarter.
The Trojans recovered the following onside kick, marched down the field and capped off their second straight touchdown drive on a 15-yard scamper by freshman running back Justin Davis to make it 48-34 Sun Devils.
Grice put the game out of reach on the next Sun Devil drive, scoring his fourth touchdown of the night, a 28-yard rush, to give the Sun Devils a 55-34 lead with only 7:09 remaining in the fourth quarter.
The Trojans went three-and-out on their next possession and the Sun Devils extended the lead to 62-34 when redshirt junior running back Deantre Lewis took it in from a yard out, his first touchdown of the season.
USC finished off the game scoring on their next drive with a 58-yard touchdown run from Davis.
The Sun Devils now travel to Dallas next weekend for a matchup against Notre Dame.
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