QUOTES: Oregon State at Arizona

Oregon State player and coach quotes from Oregon State's 17-10 victory over Arizona Oct. 21, 2006.

Coach Mike Riley
On the game - “A great win. It’s not easy to win on the road, let alone two weeks in a row. It was great to see our guys battle like this. They had to go right to the end to finish, but I’m proud of them. You have to be balanced against them. When we couldn’t run, it was a little bit like pulling teeth. We hit them with some screens and some bootlegs to keep them moving, but eventually a good defense like that settles into some stuff and makes it hard. I don’t want to drop back against that team all day long. We came back and made some big plays on that last drive. It’s unfortunate we didn’t get it done with a touchdown.”

On Steptoe returning the punt for a touchdown - “He is a great returner, as good as we’ve seen. As soon as I saw the punt had no hang time and only one guy within the vicinity, I knew it was trouble."

On kicking a field goal, instead of going for it on fourth and inches - “They hadn’t score (an offensive) touchdown all day. If we go for it and don’t make it, they still have to score a touchdown, but then they win the game. We had played outstanding defense all day long. It was the right call, because it worked.”

On his defense - "This team sticks around because of its defense. The goal line stand before the half and those points might have been the difference."

On Moore's play - “Matt’s numbers were pretty good. We would like to have taken away a couple of turnovers that would have changed the game and made it more comfortable earlier. We had a good balance going. When they started taking away the run, it made it harder for us. I don’t want to drop back (to pass) against that team all game long, I’ll tell you that. I knew this win was going to boil down to hanging in there against their defense. (The Arizona defense) is good, one of the best we’ll play against all year. If we would not have turned the ball over early, it would have made a big difference. We did, and therefore it became hard.”

On his team - “We’re making progress, which is awesome. If you don’t have growth during the season, then you’re just not doing it. Our guys are growing.”

On Bernard's injury - ““He just said he needed a series. I know when he does that it’s important. I leave it at that. We don’t know the extent of it. It would be way premature for me to say. We went through this with him all of last year. We will give him all the rest and rehab he needs and see if he’s game-ready. That will be a tough one. I just want to be careful.”

On LaRocque - "He’s kept going and has gotten a lot better and much more productive.”

“It was hard. I think it was a heck of an effort by both teams. Arizona did a great job. They rallied around their quarterback situation. We knew this was a team that would always stick around because they play good defense. It gives them a chance all the time.”


QB Matt Moore
On the game - "It was a tough game, but it was a win. Two road wins in a row is huge. Hopefully, we carry this momentum and play at home like we do on the road. “The past two weeks, we’ve shown nothing but fight. Our guys aren’t giving up, and that’s great to see. And I can't say enough about our defense. They have been awesome."

On his interceptions - "Those turnovers kind of took the wind out of our sails. But we got the big plays at the end."

On UA's punter - “Field position was huge today, and their punter was out of this world."

SS Sabby Piscitelli
On the victory - “It gives us good momentum going home and facing a great team in SC. We’re excited for the opportunity.”

On LaRocque - "Joey is really starting to come into his own. It can be hard to come into this system, with all the assignments you have as a linebacker. I think he's really starting to understand the defense, he's playing worry-free, and he's making a lot of plays."

On the defense playing well - "I think a lot of us are starting to take it personal. We've got a lot of young guys trying to prove themselves and they're excited to play the game."

On WR Anthony Johnson at QB to start the game - "I had to ask Steptoe who the quarterback was,"


S Daniel Drayton
On his team - “We turned the corner. We’re getting better as a team. We had unfortunate losses at the beginning, but we are getting better as a team. We’re excited about the rest of the season. The offense is playing amazing. Defensively, we are getting pressure. It’s going to be exciting around Corvallis.”

On his interception to end the game - "I was just playing center field and the ball. They wanted me to play center field, be a ball hawk. We got some pressure on the quarterback, he was scrambling and threw it up for grabs."

WR Sammie Stroughter
On the win - We’re building our identity from the beginning. When it’s tough, what kind of team are we going to be? We are not going to crumble. We will show our hearts. Now we are getting the little things right. The offense has taken it upon ourselves and the defense is really, really holding us as an anchor. They are allowing us to gamble more and the defense has been playing a heck of a game.”

On the game's last drive - "Did I think Arizona was gonna score? Uh-uh, no way. Not with our defense out there."


LB Joey LaRocque
On the game
- “That’s football for you. One side struggles at times and the other has to pick up the slack. Overall, the offense did a great job tonight. They drove pretty well. It doesn’t need to be a big scoring game. They did fine, and our defense obviously played pretty well.”

On his interception - "I kind of just looked at the quarterback’s eyes and he kind of just took me to the right spot. I didn’t want anybody to come and swoop in from behind me or anything. I saw it and just went to it. Thank goodness it happened. We needed it. Things wouldn’t happen if we didn’t have good pressure and if somebody didn’t jar the ball loose. I was just kind of at the right place at the right time.”

On the win giving them momentum heading into the game with USC - "I certainly hope so. Football is such a game of momentum. If you can keep building on it, you're going to be a pretty good football team."

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