Boise State: Post game notebook

Post game news and notes from Oregon State's victory over Boise State on Saturday, Sept. 10.

Play of the game.
After the Beavers had battled back from a 14-point deficit to make it a three point game, Boise State took the ball to the OSU six. Instead of making it a six point lead, Dan Hawkins decided to go for the throat and go for it on fourth and three.

Jared Zabransky made a decent throw to Jared Rabb on a fade route in the corner of the endzone and it looked like the Broncos would take a 10 point lead into half-time, but cornerback Keenan Lewis closed on the ball quickly, laying out to deflect the pigskin giving the Beavers some momentum heading into the second half.


Players of the game.

Offense - Matt Moore and Mike Hass. In just two games Moore and Hass have shown they have a connection on the field as Hass continues to get open and Moore continues to find him. Read more about the dynamic duo below.

Defense - Jeff Van Orsow or Keenan Lewis. Van Orsow wreaked havoc in the backfield grabbing seven tackles including two for loss. Lewis brought a ton of energy and despite being beat a couple of times, kept his head up and deflected several difficult passes.

Special teams - Alexis Serna. If your the kicker you are either the hero or the goat, there is no in between...this time Serna's a hero after making all three field goals and all of his extra points. He is 5 of 6 on field goals and 8 of 8 on extra points for the season.

"Probably the top moment of my career," Serna said. "We needed the win. I always tell myself before the game, be prepared to hit the game-winner if it comes to that. I was nervous, but once I got out there, I took a deep breath, relaxed and it all went away."


Linebacker U.
For the second straight week the two senior linebackers, Trent Bray and Keith Ellison, recorded double digit tackles as Bray tallied 13 and Ellison 12. Bray leads the Pac-10 in tackles with 25 while Ellison is tied for second with 23. Derrick Doggett also grabbed a career high 11 tackles.


Nice Hass and we want Moore.
Senior receiver Mike Hass recorded his sixth consecutive game with over 100 yards receiving as he hauled in 11 passes for 178 yards and one touchdown. One again, he was clutch as he hauled in key pass after key pass including the touchdown that lead to the game tying extra point.

He leads the PAC-10 in receptions (20) and yards (333), and is tied for second in touchdowns with two. He is second nationally in receptions per game (10) and third in receiving yards per game (166.5). The former walk-on moved into No. 3 past Reggie Bynum on OSU's career reception list. Warning shameless plug...if you have seen the t-shirts that say "Nice Hass" on the front and "28" on the back you can purchase those from OrangeAttack for $10 on game day...not a bad deal.

Junior quarterback Matt Moore also continued his success completing 27 of 38 passes for 279 yards and one touchdown. In just two games Moore is 53 of 76 (69%) for 646 yards and five touchdowns.


Defense buckles down in fourth.
Boise State racked up 360 yards on 67 yards through three quarters, but the Beaver defense buckled down limiting the Broncos to 32 yards on 13 plays in the fourth quarter. BSU lost 13 yards on its first drive of the fourth, gained 3 yards on the second drive and managed 27 when it needed at least 55 on the game-ending drive.


Special concerns.
A high snap. A fumbled punt. Poor kickoff coverage. Another high snap. Poor kickoff coverage. A botched field goal. A fumbled kickoff. A blocked punt. There wasn't much that the Oregon State special teams did, good or bad, on Saturday. Nate Wright fumbled the opening kickoff of the second half. Sammie Stroughter fumbled a punt return. There was a botched 34-yard field goal attempt due to a bad snap. Sam Paulescu had to jump to the side to keep the snap from sailing by him. But through it all the special teams came out on top as true freshman Victor Butler broke throw the line and blocked a punt and Serna hit the game winning field goal.

Riley said that the mistakes were "a product of our youth. Some guys made some real bad choices in kick coverage. . . . We'll get better." Let's hope.


One of the best?
"That's absolutely an all-timer," Oregon State coach Mike Riley said after the Beavers' 30-27 victory Saturday over Boise State. "I don't know where it ranks among the best wins (of his coaching career), but I'm excited to learn more about this team. It's been a mystery to me. One thing I found out today -- we have pretty good character guys. I suspected that from the work we've been getting."


Empty seats.
Saturday's game was supposed to be a sellout and ticket-wise it probably was but it was nowhere near filled up as two sections on the renovated side were completely empty as well as the first row of the second deck. Hopefully we will experience a real sellout for the PAC-10 home opener in two weeks.


"Our team really showed something," said quarterback Matt Moore. "(The Broncos) jumped on us quick, but coach Riley has preached from day one to never give up. We showed a lot by coming back the way we did today."

"That's the craziest game I've played in my life," Moore said. "The hail, the rain and the game itself. To play on that (hail), it was gnarly. But it was a lot of fun. I'm just happy to come out on top."

"We beat a good team, and this was a big hurdle," coach Mike Riley said. "We had every bit of adversity, a lot of created by ourselves. It's great to be 2-0, but it just gets harder."

"It was huge to comeback from that situation," wide receiver Mike Hass said. "It showed how much character this team has."

"I don't know how many other things could go wrong in a game," Riley said, "... but one of the key things is that we still had guys make plays, and they never quit."

"The main thing about that game for me is finding out more about this team, and who they are and how we are going to react," Riley said. "Our reaction was awesome. We faced every adversity that you can muster. And we created a lot of it ourselves. But the perseverance was awesome."

"I was a little nervous before I went in there," placekicker Alexis Serna said. "I just took a deep breath right before the kick and relaxed, and it all went away."

"We just started playing," middle linebacker Trent Bray said. "We came out, and weren't really flying around. Once they got those first two drives, we just pinned our ears back and went."

"First away game, playing at a big-time school like Louisville, we'll be ready," Moore said. "I think we've just got to carry this emotion on to next Saturday."

"I probably shouldn't have done that. It was uncharacteristic," said Hass who high stepped into the endzone for the game tying touchdown. "I probably deserved a penalty. It didn't hurt us, so no harm no foul I guess."

"I know a lot of guys got frustrated," Moore said. "We didn't show it on the field, but we were upset. We kept fighting and driving because that was the cards we were dealt. We worked with what we got and we made the most of it. We showed a lot of character not falling apart."

"To be 2-0 right now is a very good thing for this team," Riley said. "It was a big hurdle. And now it only gets harder. I would think this is a good game for our players to find out what they can do. They don't know that, yet, but they are finding out. And they should have found out a lot today."

"Matt didn't turn the ball over today, and his completion percentage was ridiculous," Hass said. "He scrambled a couple of times and showed heart in taking some hits. I couldn't be happier with who's behind center right now."


Injury report.

  • Anthony Wheat-Brown is still suffering from an ankle injury but is expected to start against Louisville.


Additional news and notes.

  • Didn't lead until 1:03 left in the game

  • Defensive end Joe Rudulph recorded the Beavers first and so far only sack of the season.

  • Wide receiver Josh Hakwins had six catches for 49 yards which were both career highs.

  • Defensive tackle Alvin Smith recovered two fumbles which is one short of the OSU record of three that was set in 1977 against USC.

  • Defensive end Victor Butler blocked the first punt of the year in the third quarter.

  • Long snapper Joel Cohen, who almost through two punts over Sam Paulescu's head and was responsible for the botched 34-yard field goal attempt, was replaced by walk on Darrick Bruns in the second half. Bruns left the team briefly before rejoining the team last week.

  • Oregon State has won 20 non-conference home games and has a five game winning streak that dates back to last season

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