Nick Pasquale (Don Liebig / UCLA )
Nick Pasquale, who had recently played in his first game for UCLA's football team, was fatally struck by a vehicle as he walked in a residential area of San Clemente early Sunday morning.
Pasquale was a walk-on receiver, who was playing second season with the Bruins. He made the first appearance of his career in a 58-20 victory over Nevada on Aug. 31.
Pasquale, 20, was walking in San Clemente when two cars approached. One car avoided him, but the other could not.
"The driver called in the accident and waited at the scene," said Lt. Gary Strachan, a spokesman for the Orange County Sheriff's Department. "No one was arrested."
Strachan said deputies were investigating why Pasquale was in the street.
"This is a tragic loss," UCLA Coach Jim Mora said. "Nick was an outstanding young man who had a positive impact on everyone who knew him. He was a great teammate who was loved and respected by his entire team. Our thoughts are with the Pasquale family."
Pasquale had been a standout player at San Clemente High School. He was one of the key players who helped the Tritons reach the Southern Section Pac-5 championship game in 2011.
Pasquale was named All-Orange County.
"We talk with our kids a lot about what it means to be Triton, being a close-knit community, that we're one town and one team," San Clemente Coach Jaime Ortiz said. "Whenever I describe what we expect, I think of Nick. He was the epitome of what it meant to be a Triton, on and off the field. He was an undersized cornerback and not the fastest guy, but he always found a way to make things happen."
Pasquale earned a walk-on spot with the Bruins and spent last season as a member of the scout team.
"The UCLA family lost a wonderful young man who represented the university, his team and his family well," UCLA Athletic Director Dan Guerrero said. "Our hearts go out to the Pasquale family, and we will do everything we can to assist and support them, as well as his teammates, as they go through this unthinkable tragedy."