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Once again, the Oregon State football team spotted an opponent a big lead before mounting a comeback.

Last week, the Beavers came all the way back from 31-3 down early in the third quarter to knock off Colorado 41-24 in overtime in Boulder.

On Saturday, the Beavers gave up the first 21 points to USC before finally getting something going.

The Beavers cut the deficit to 21-14 at the half, but could never get over the hump and the Trojans were able to snap a two-game losing streak with a 38-21 Pac-12 win before a Reser Stadium crowd of 35,187.

Oregon State (2-7, 1-5) will hit the road and look to bounce back next Saturday against a Stanford team that has lost two straight after falling 27-23 at Washington on Saturday night.

Aca’Cedric Ware finished with 205 yards rushing on 17 carries and his 62-yard touchdown run early in the fourth sealed it for the Trojans. He added two more touchdowns.

That run came after the Beavers had what would have been a fumble return for a touchdown initially ruled that the USC player was down. Upon review, the Beavers were awarded the ball at the USC 39.

They gained just one yard and turned the ball over on downs, however. Ware then scored on the next play for a 35-21 lead with 11:53 left.

Vave Malepeai added 101 yards on 15 carries as the Trojans rushed for 332 yards as a team.

USC quarterback JT Daniels returned from a concussion and completed 14 of 26 passes for 177 yards a touchdown.

After a sizzling first half, Oregon State quarterback Jake Luton was unable to duplicate the feat. Luton finished 31 of 45 with 301 yards after going 22 of 27 for 220 yards and a touchdown in the first 30 minutes.

Running back Jermar Jefferson, who had minus-4 yards rushing in the first half, finished with 58 on 18 attempts.

Isaiah Hodgins had eight catches for 129 and Trevon Bradford had 10 for 63 for the Beavers.

The Trojans took the second-half kickoff and went 67 yard in eight plays with Ware cashing in from the 2 for a 28-14 lead.

The Beavers, however, countered with an 11-play, 75-yard drive with Artavis Pierce taking it the final 6 yards after a late hit on third down kept the drive alive.

That made it 28-21 with 6:23 left in the third.

The Beavers’ defense forced two three-and-outs and the offense moved the ball to the 19 after the second one. But on fourth down, OSU opted for a trick play with Timmy Hernandez attempting a pass that was incomplete.

Michael Brown tacked on a 46-yard field goal with 4:42 left for the final points.

It was another bad start for the Beavers.

After forcing an OSU punt, USC used a 17-play, 86-yard drive that chewed up 7:22 off the clock to take a 7-0 lead. Stephen Carr capped the impressive drive with an 8-yard run with 5:38 left in the first.

A promising OSU drive was derailed by a second-down sack and loss of 10 yards. The Beavers settled for a 50-yard field goal attempt but it was wide right with 43 seconds left in the quarter.

The Trojans took a 14-0 lead one play into the second quarter after Ware went 57 yards over the left side for the score. It was a four-play 68 yard drive that took just 53 seconds.

Daniels connected with Devon Williams for a 41-yard touchdown pass to cap another long USC drive, this one 11 plays for 81 yards and 4:31 off the clock.

That put the Trojans up 21-0 with 7:13 left in the half.

Bradford’s 55-yard kickoff return set up the Beavers’ first scoring drive. On first-and-goal from the 6, Jack Colletto came on and ran a quarterback keeper to the left for the score.

The Beavers went 45 yards in eight plays in 2:47 to get within 21-7 with 4:15 left in the half.

The Beavers forced the first USC punt and then went 85 yards in eight plays and just 67 seconds with Luton connecting with Noah Togiai from 11 yards out for the score to make it 21-14 with 4 seconds left in the half.

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Sports Editor

Sports editor of the Corvallis Gazette-Times and Albany Democrat-Herald