A Closer Look: Arizona 34, ASU 27

Arizona defended their home turf of the first time since 1998, snapping a two-game ASU win streak in the process. The win also assures the Wildcats of not finishing at the bottom of the Pac-10.

PLAYER OF THE GAME:
Carlos Williams. The senior defensive tackle force two fumbles, recovering one. He also had a sack. He played tough all season long taking an unprecedented 95% of the snaps at the demanding defensive tackle position. Honorable mention must go to Kirk Johnson who recovered a pair of fumbles in his final game.

PLAY OF THE GAME
So many to choose from, but I'll take Richard Kovalcheck's 55-yard touchdown pass to Steve Fleming. Kovalcheck lofted a perfect toss to the tight end whose defender had slipped. Fleming was met by a pair of Sun Devil defenders inside the five but bowled his way into the endzone.

TURNING POINT
Jesse Ainsworth's second quarter field goal attempt would put the Devils up seven, instead he kicks it into his own line. The Cats take possession and march down the field, capping things with a two-yard touchdown pass to Michael Jefferson. They take the lead 20-17 and never look back.

CAREER BEST
Richard Kovalcheck passed for 240 yards and three scores, both career highs.

B.J. Dennard had his first career catch, hauling in an acrobatic 33 yarder.

OLDIES AND GOODIES
The Wildcats take possession of the Territorial Cup, recognized by the NCAA as the nation's longest-standing traveling trophy for a rivalry.

WIN SANDWICH
The win was the first home win since the season opener against NAU.

THE OFFENSE
The Wildcats set a season high in both total points and first half points.

THE SERIES
Arizona leads the all-time series 44-33-1. Arizona is 28-16 at home, but it is their first win at Arizona Stadium since 1998. The Cats and Devils have split the last four meetings. ASU had won two straight and 4-of-5 before Friday's loss. Arizona State has not won more than two consecutive games in the series since winning four in a row from 1975-78. The Cats hold a 16-10-1 advantage since both schools joined the Pac-10. A nine game unbeaten streak is responsible for that advantage.

SO LONG SENIORS
15 players ended their UA careers on Friday. They are (listed alphabetically): LS Ben DalMolin, TE Steve Fleming, C Keoki Fraser, RB Chris Harris, LB Patrick Howard, T Chris Johnson, LB Kirk Johnson; TE Clarence McRae, T Brandon Phillips, DB Zeonte Sherman, DE Andre Torrey, WR Juan Valentine, DT Carlos Williams, WR Ricky Williams and DB Tony Wingate.

Ricky Williams had one catch for eight yards.
Steve Fleming had four catches for 70 yards and a score.
Kirk Johnson had six tackles and two fumble recoveries.
Tony Wingate had five tackles and a pass break-up.
Andre Torrey had five tackles (2.5 for loss) and a sack.
Pat Howard had five tackles, a forced fumble and a pass break-up.
Ben DalMolin had a tackle.
Carlos Williams had two tackles, two forced fumbles and a sack.
Keoki Fraser, Chris Johnson and Clarence McRae started with Fleming on offense.
Williams, Howard, Torrey, Johnson and Wingate all started on defense.
Zeonte Sherman was the only other senior to play. Brandon Phillips was injured and could not participate.

BIG LEG
Nick Folk's 53-yard field goal was the eighth longest in school history. He joins four other kickers in making kicks of 53-yards or more. They are Lee Pistor, John Prasuhn, Max Zendejas and Steve McLaughlin. Pistor, Prasuhn and Zendejas have the school best of 57 yards.

THE STREAK
Keoki Fraser started his 33rd straight game (40th overall).

TURNOVERS
Arizona was +4 for the game and finished the year with three more takeaways than giveaways.

RECRUITING RUSH
The Wildcats had a record number of ticket requests by recruits, their coaches and their parents. By all accounts over 80 tickets were requested by some of the best underclass players in the state, as well as some top young players from California.

PLAYER STATISTICS
Sun Devils (8-3)
PASSING
  CP/AT YDS TD INT
A Walter 23/38 319 0 1
S Keller 8/13 94 1 0

 

RUSHING

  ATT YDS TD LG
H Hill 19 81 1 21
R Burgess 5 20 0 5
A Walter 1 4 0 4

 

RECEIVING

  REC YDS TD LG
D Hagan 7 110 0 50
M Mutz 4 76 0 42
Z Miller 8 74 0 25
M Miller 3 53 0 41
H Hill 4 41 0 28
B Miller 1 24 0 24
J Lewis 2 23 1 20
R Burgess 1 9 0 9
L Burghgraef 1 1 0 1
KICKING
  FG LG XP PTS
J Ainsworth 2/3 36 3/3 9
PUNTING
  NO AVG I20 LG
C MacDonald 2 47.0 0 52
KICKOFF RETURNS
  NO AVG TD LG
R Burgess 1 27.0 0 27
T Richardson 2 40.0 0 66
PUNT RETURNS
  NO AVG TD LG
T Richardson 3 32.7 0 46
DEFENSE
  SCK INT FF
J Barrett 0.0 1 0
J Hill 1.0 0 0
J Williams 1.0 0 0
Wildcats (3-8)
PASSING
  CP/AT YDS TD INT
R Kovalcheck 17/31 240 3 1
K Heavner 1/1 10 0 0

 

RUSHING

  ATT YDS TD LG
M Bell 22 137 0 56
G Harris 9 29 1 9
B Dennard 1 0 0 0
R Kovalcheck 6 -16 0 9

 

RECEIVING

  REC YDS TD LG
S Fleming 5 70 1 54
S Steptoe 6 66 0 26
M Jefferson 2 49 2 47
B Dennard 1 33 0 33
G Harris 2 18 0 13
R Williams 1 8 0 8
P Limon 1 5 0 5
KICKING
  FG LG XP PTS
N Folk 2/3 53 4/4 10
PUNTING
  NO AVG I20 LG
D Baugher 6 49.3 2 56
KICKOFF RETURNS
  NO AVG TD LG
B Dennard 1 12.0 0 12
PUNT RETURNS
  NO AVG TD LG
S Steptoe 1 12.0 0 12
DEFENSE
  SCK INT FF
L Dotson 1.0 0 0
W Fontenot 0.0 1 0
P Howard 1.0 0 0
C Williams 1.0 0 0


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