SALT LAKE CITY — Oregon State unveiled a new look on the football field Thursday night at the University of Utah. Unfortunately for the visiting Beavers, the combination of white jerseys and black pants didn't help them deliver a new look on their opponents' scoreboard.

SALT LAKE CITY — Oregon State unveiled a new look on the football field Thursday night at the University of Utah. Unfortunately for the visiting Beavers, the combination of white jerseys and black pants didn't help them deliver a new look on their opponents' scoreboard.

A week after rocking and shocking the college football world by toppling No. 1 USC, OSU fell in heartbreaking fashion on a last-second field goal that gave the 15th-ranked Utes a 31-28 victory at Rice-Eccles Stadium.

"Tough loss for us," Oregon State defensive end Slade Norris said.

That's a familiar road refrain for OSU, which lost for the third straight time away from Corvallis in 2008.

OSU coach Mike Riley lamented about yet another solemn flight home for his team. But while road losses at Stanford, Penn State and Utah "all hurt badly," his baggage is packed with enough positives to make this return trip a bit more pleasant than the one from Pennsylvania.

"I wasn't sure if we were in that game mentally back there at Penn State," he said, referring to the Beavers' 45-14 loss last month. "This game we played."

It's also one in which they played well enough to win, especially on defense, until giving up 11 points in the final minute-and-a-half.

The Beavers credited Utah fans, 45,599 of whom packed the place for the third-largest crowd in the stadium's history, for playing a part in the loss. OSU had three false-start penalties on one drive alone, partly because of the commotion.

"It's a tough place," Norris said. "They've got great fans. They were on us all game long. We had some offsides penalties maybe because of the noise. They're a tough team."

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NO EXCUSES: Neither Riley nor Norris blamed a post-USC hangover of sorts for contributing to the loss.

"Oh no," Riley said. "If we would've come out flat, we might have lost by 30."

The ending fizzled out, but for the most part Norris said the Beavers were up for this one. They held Utah to just 337 yards of offense.

"I don't think we came out flat at all. They're a great team," Norris said. "We've got to play a whole great game to beat them and we didn't do that. We didn't finish."

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ROCKY RETURN: Kicker Justin Kahut returned to the field after missing the USC game and two quarters against Hawaii with a hip flexor. But he had mixed results.

The sophomore drilled his first kick, a 37-yard field goal that put the Beavers up 3-0 early in the first quarter. Then the uprights seemed to narrow. Kahut's second kick sailed wide right on an extra-point attempt. OSU tried to regain that point twice after their next two touchdowns, but a run and a pass failed.

Kahut then missed another field goal — from 43 yards out, again to the right — that would've put OSU up by four late in the third quarter. He wrapped up his night with a PAT that put the Beavers up 28-20 with 2:18 remaining.

Riley didn't blame Kahut's injury on his hit-and-miss performance.

"I think he was totally healthy," Riley said. "It's a game of inches. He didn't miss by far."

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BIG NIGHT: The loss spoiled what had been a huge game for Norris. He notched his first sack of the season on the Beavers' first defensive play. He finished with two sacks, three total tackles for loss and forced Utah quarterback Brian Johnson into a third-quarter fumble, leading to an OSU touchdown.

Norris, however, was bummed out that the Beavers didn't finish stronger.

"In the whole second half, the defense, we were playing a great game," he said, "and coming down to it we just didn't make plays."

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LOOKING HEALTHY: Safety Al Afalava was questionable with a groin injury but he played and turned the momentum in the Beavers' favor several times. He scored Oregon State's first touchdown on 26-yard interception return in the second quarter. Another potential pick slipped out of his hands in the third quarter.

Receiver Sammie Stroughter also played after being questionable prior to the game with his hip pointer but only made two receptions for 32 yards.

Cornerback Brandon Hughes missed the game with a hamstring injury.

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MISSING POINTS: Riley said several plays and missed scoring chances will haunt the Beavers. They'll especially kick themselves for leaving eight points in Utah, when you figure in a missed PAT, a pair of failed 2-point conversion plays and a botched field goal.

"We'll look back at 20 plays in this game," he said. "It was too many opportunities to have a couple more points."