The Utes punted on their first possession of the third quarter and then watched the Bears move 87 yards on 11 plays to put another touchdown on the board. A 4-yard keeper by Maynard finished things off.
Trailing 27-0, Utah endured more misery when Hays was intercepted by Cal cornerback Stefan McClure on the next drive.
A reversal of fortune — albeit a minor one — materialized a few minutes later when the usually sure-footed Tavecchio was wide left on a 29-yard field attempt.
Things continued to go Utah's way when Griff Robles replaced Hays at quarterback on the possession that followed. However, it was punter Sean Sellwood who made the most significant contribution. On fourth-and-8 from the Utah 22, he completed a 17-yard pass to defensive lineman Star Lotulelei on a fake punt to keep the drive alive.
Cal, however, killed it two plays later when cornerback Josh Hill intercepted the re-inserted Hays for a 32-yard pick-six as the nightmare resumed for Utah.
After falling behind by 34, the Utes managed to put their only points on the board — scoring on a 36-yard field goal by Coleman Petersen and on 14-yard touchdown run by White down the stretch.
It was far too little, obviously, to affect the outcome of a game pitting two teams in search of their first conference wins.
"I am surprised that we didn't match the intensity," Lotulelei said. "I thought we did a real good job during the week and prepared. My teammates, I thought, were all ready to go."
Cal, however, got on top quickly and Lotulelei noted that the Utes lost confidence and it "went downhill."
Utah will seek to bounce back Saturday at home against Oregon State.
"We've just got to band together as a team and player harder," said linebacker Chaz Walker.
Email: email@example.com Twitter: @DirkFacer
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