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For all of their past failures in close games versus the Cardinal in the past, the Bruins were able to pull one out Saturday evening in Palo Alto.

No. 24 UCLA football (3-1, 1-0 Pac-12) bested Stanford (2-2, 1-1) on the road Saturday, taking a hold of the game, nearly slipping late before recovering for the always-stressful win. It marked the Bruins' second victory over the Cardinal in three years following Stanford's 11-game winning streak in the annual rivalry.

Receiver Kyle Philips got things rolling with a 59-yard punt return on the Bruins' first touch of the game.

Philips very nearly brought it back for six, but got tripped up just inside the Stanford red zone. Not long after, the Cardinal started punting out of bounds, and Bruin fans took notice.

Philips' long return put UCLA in easy striking distance, and a bunch of runs up the middle led to a short keeper by quarterback Dorian Thompson-Robinson that ended in the end zone.

Two drives later, the Bruins marched 88 yards in 17 plays and 8:08, extending their lead to 14-0 early on by once again leaning heavily on the run. As hesitant as UCLA fans had been entering the game, the one-sided first quarter got people buzzing.

The UCLA defense played a large part in opening up that early lead, as it forced Stanford into five straight 3-and-outs to start the day.

From linebacker Carl Jones Jr. breaking into the backfield and cornerback Obi Eboh stepping up to the plate when his former team kept throwing his way, the Bruins' defense was shutting down the Cardinal both on the ground and through the air.

Stanford cut the lead to seven, only for UCLA to score another touchdown just before the half.

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That 21-7 lead lasted for much of the third, but it was erased in an instant when quarterback Tanner McKee had two touchdowns of 50-plus yards as the third quarter turned into the fourth.

And just like that, the score was tied and the Bruin faithful were losing hope that this year would be any different from year's past.

Even following a long touchdown from Thompson-Robsinson to Philips and the defense holding Stanford to a field goal the ensuing drive, fans didn't feel very comfortable up by four.

And although the Bruins had gone all the way down the field and killed a lot of clock, people were ready to throw in the towel when Thompson-Robinson left with a shoulder injury. He wound up returning one play later, however, and he tossed a 5-yard touchdown to Philips to go up by 11 as he ran back to the sideline in pain.

As the time ticked off the clock and the game went final, the Bruins ran back down the tunnel celebrating their win. Fans and figure heads online joined in as well, and a few players hopped on social media to add in their two cents following the game as well.

The roller coaster of emotions doesn't seem to end for the UCLA fanbase – one week they're ready to anoint Kelly, the next they're ready to fire him and the one after that, they welcome him back with open arms.

For now, at least, that roller coaster is on a high as the Bruins sit at 3-1 ready to take on the whole Pac-12.

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