Richard Johnson caught a United States Football League record four touchdown passes from Jim Kelly Monday night as the Houston Gamblers rolled to a 45-7 victory over the Portland Breakers.
Johnson, in his fourth pro season from Colorado, had scoring catches of 11, 49 and 1 yards in the first half, then added a seven-yard reception late in the third quarter. The 5-foot-9 receiver wound up with 10 receptions for 167 yards.
Kelly had another big game, boosting his season's touchdown pass total to 35. He completed 32 of 45 passes for 348 yards before sitting out the final 12 minutes. The Gamblers never were forced to punt.
Houston scored on each of its five first-half possessions to take a 31-7 lead, with Kelly completing 23 of 32 passes for 276 yards.
Houston (8-3) won its third in a row--all on the road--to regain sole possession of first place in the Western Conference, half a game ahead of Oakland.
Portland (3-8) lost its fourth straight game. The Breakers, playing at home for the first time in a month, drew a crowd of 18,457.
Kelly completed five straight passes to direct Houston to its first score. On the next Gambler series, Kelly fired a perfect over-the-middle bomb to Johnson on third down and short yardage for a 49-yard score.