A rousing Washington defense kept Oregon State offensive from the point guard while a huge night by Husky star Salvon Ahmed helped propel the Huskies to a 19-7 road victory over Oregon State on Friday night.
The game started out on an ominous note not because of anything on the field but because when I started FS1 at start time I was met with horror at the site of yet another NASCAR Truck race. With visions of an entire first quarter of UW 2017 at the Stanford game offered in the name of NASCAR, some inappropriate curses formed on my lips. Fortunately, Stewart Friesen and his lovely mustache went on to Championship 4 at Homestead-Miami without any crash-related delays eating into the planned kickoff season.
When the game hit the air, the first name vibe was positive for Dawg fans. Attractions by both red-haired rookie RB Richard Newton and the now-redshirt "sophomore" WR Ty Jones who watch out were met with enthusiasm by fans everywhere. Huskies, the loser of two straight home games and sitting at a disappointing 2-4 conference record, needed some good news and the return of two important contributors really gave it.
It was the last of the positive vibes that Huskies fans would feel for a while. While the Huskies defense came on strong in the first half, it was hard to ignore a offense so sluggish that it brought back memories of Arizona State 201
Fortunately, the Dawgs defense was up to the task. The very vicious unit set up its own dominant performance against what has been a strong Oregon State offensive line and a high scoring unit. Joe Tryon and Levi Onwuzurike created an uninterrupted havoc that helped the Huskies knock the first half out and led to a 10-0 UW advantage that went into the break.
The second half got another ugly offensive start. The Beavers attempted a poorly-kicked kick that gave UW the ball on their 45 yard line. But 11 appearances later, UW managed just one field goal to extend the lead to 13-0.
UW QB Jacob Eason continued to fight even as his defense continued to give him the ball back. An unlucky pick six halfway through the third quarter brought back memories of last week's game against Utah and put the Beavers back in the game.
Then Salvon Ahmed happened.
Ahmed's 60-yard outburst (and a failed 2-point conversion) raised the Huskies 19-7. It also provided all the cushion that UW's D would need to finish the victory. That Husky D would only hand over 8 total annoyances to OSU in the second half to preserve the final result.
With the not so beautiful victory, UW goes to 3-4 in conference play. Husky fans will lament the fact that the Dawgs have not yet put together a full game against a PAC 12 opponent. If it is not a fighting offense (Cal, Stanford, OSU), it is a porous defense (USC, Oregon, Utah). Nevertheless, Washington has now collected its sixth victory and is eligible for bowl.
- Salvon Ahmed pulled out Hunter Bryant as UW's offensive player. He set a new personal record by walking 174 yards on 25 carries including two for touchdowns.
- Despite Ahmed & # 39; s heroics, the story of this game was once again the inconsistent arm of Jacob Eason. In the first half, Eason only managed 6 of 15 with 1 INT and one lap per attempt of 2.6 before a 40 yard addition to Hunter Bryant doubled his yardage and appeared to shake off the spider net. The fighting continued during the second half with the pick six and a handful of poorly thrown balls. Eason finished with just 175 yards on 5.5 yards per attempt and 2 INTs.
- Joe Tryon had his best game of the year. He recorded 2.0 sacks, 4.5 tackles for loss, 7 tackles and had the huge open field tackle to force a first half turnover on slumps on what was a great read of a screen pass.
- The emergence of Levi Onwuzurike continues. He was very disturbing time and time again throughout this game and split into a sack.
- Oregon State QB Jake Luton entered the game with the second best TD: INT ratio (19: 1) in the nation. That ratio hit a daredevil fourth game of: 43 seconds to go in the first half brilliantly picked by Elijah Molden.
- Unsung heroes include Ed Ulofoshio who played a bunch of snaps at ILB and recorded 9 tackles to lead the team with Keith Taylor who was in charge of OSU star Isaiah Hodgins most of the night and held him to just four catches.
- I mentioned Hunter Bryant above. Star Husky TE was the best offensive player on the field for Dawgs despite managing a gimpy ankle injury early in the first quarter. He finished the game with 5 catches on 90 decisive turns. It doesn't even count yards that are eliminated due to penalties and a few uneven completions that Bryant struggled with in mid-court situations. He was a warrior for UW.
- Richard Newton's return meant that the wildcats returned to the Husky crime. The very unpopular formation was run only once for a total of 2 turns.
- Washington entered this game averaging more than two TD points per game during the first quarter. Against a weak OSU defense, UW intended to extend these figures. Instead, the Beavs tones set defensively by allowing just a single long FG to UW's Peyton Henry.
- Speaking of Henry, his stretch of 16 straight FGs ended without miss failed with a 28 yard attempt to close the first half which was completely battered and badly missed to the right. He would continue to miss two more kicks, though one of them succeeded again after a defensive penalty.
- It was a game during the first quarter that exemplified the preparation that went into the defensive game plan. On a 3rd down line, UW stood up with both their DLs on the outer shoulders of their opposite tackles and the OLBs just outside them. Dawgs sold out to protect the perimeter and the subsequent OSU screen pass was dropped immediately for a fourth down.
- Former Ohio State coach Urban Meyer delivered a subtle jab to UW and coach Chris Petersen during the first race when he noted that he had experience playing PAC 12 teams for the last two seasons after the post but that both Oregon and Utah stood out as "a full team with all purposes" and the best of the team he saw directly.
- Don't beat the writer Mike Vorel to drum up the unclear status of the day and to articulate a prediction without predicting anything :