"We had some opportunities in every phase to close it out and didn't get it done," said a frustrated Mark Helfrich of the Ducks' third loss of the season, "I thought we played hard. We didn't get off to a great start or a great finish in the first half defensively, but in between we did some good things."
Oregon falls to 3-3 for the season and 1-2 in Pac-12 play.
Freeman also had three receptions for 46 yards and a TD reception.
Oregon had a 10-point lead in the fourth quarter but when Oregon most needed the right scheme called against the Cougar the calls seemed to put the Ducks in the wrong place at the wrong time, something that has affected the Ducks all season long.
With 5:54 left in the game and WSU trailing by 10 and starting at the WSU 40, the Cougars set off on a drive that saw Luke Falk hit a 15-yard completion to Robert Lewis followed up with a 5-yarder to Kyrin Priester. The Ducks looked like they were expecting another pass but Mike Leech called a run play that was good for 31 to Oregon 7. The Cougars couldn’t score a touchdown but Leech didn’t panic and ordered a field goal, which was good from 22 yards out and the score was trimmed to 31-24.
It was then just a matter of getting the ball back because Oregon was uncreative in the offensive play calling and went 3-and-out to force a punt. WSU got the ball back, went on a 12-play 70 yard drive and scored with one second left on the clock to tie the game.
The game went into overtime with Oregon possessing the ball first and scoring but WSU answered to force a second overtime. In the second overtime, WSU was able to pick up a first down on the 1-yard line and ultimately scored a touchdown. When Oregon took possession, the Ducks couldn’t move the ball and were called for a holding penalty. The playbook apparently was written for the players on the roster as nothing worked and the game ended with Jeff Lockie’s final pass was intercepted in the end zone and the game was over with another Oregon loss.
Jeff Lockie played most of the game and was 13-of-22 passing for 123 yards and two touchdowns, the first to Freeman and the second during the first overtime period to Bralon Addison. Lockie also carried the ball eight times for 52 yards.
Taylor Alie also played and scored on a rushing touchdown in the first quarter. Alie threw the ball twice but neither toss found a receiver
“I think everyone is aware that we need to throw the ball more," said Royce Freeman, who to comment on the state of the Oregon passing game. "Considering the amount of times we run the ball and how we are trying to throw the ball, it’s something to work on. I feel when we go out there we do what we need to do.”
Addison was the leading receiver for the Ducks with eight catches for 62 yards.
Aidan Schneider continued his field goal kicking streak by hitting a 26-yard field goal.
Defensively, the Oregon defensive front had seven sacks, but when it seemed that the defensive front was taking control of the line of scrimmage, the secondary would be out of position and WSU was able to move the ball downfield.
Sacks were recorded by Terrodney Prevot (2 tackles for loss, one being a sack); Tyson Coleman (2 TFLs, one sack); DeForest Buckner (two sacks); Alex Balducci (one sack); Henry Mondeaux (one sack). Rodney Hardrick, Johnny Regin and Juwaun Williams had TFLs.
Charles Nelson, who moved from the offense to the defense for this game was the leading tackler with 12 total-tackles (six solos), he also had two pass break-ups.
Luke Falk was 50-for-74, 505 yards and five touchdowns. Gabe Marks and 111 yards receiving and two TDs. Dom Williams, Robert Lewis and Tavares Martin also had touchdown receptions for the Cougars.
WSU kicker Erik Powell was 1-for-2 in field goals. His first attempt was blocked but he was good on the second from 22 yards out.
Next up for Oregon are the Washington Huskies at Husky Stadium next Saturday.
•Royce Freeman broke through the 200-yard rushing barrier for the first time and 100-yard mark for the 10th time in his career, tying Terrence Whitehead (2002-05), Onterrio Smith (2001-02), Ruben Droughns (1998-99) and Ahmad Rashad (FKA Bobby Moore, 1969-71), for seventh on the UO career list. The true sophomore finished with a career-high 246 yards on 27 carries. His 246 yards rushing is the eighth-most in a single game in UO history.
•Freeman scored a touchdown for the sixth straight game, finishing with three total (2 rushing, 1 receiving).
•With a crowd of 57,775, Autzen Stadium hosted a sellout crowd for the 107th straight game.
•Charles Nelson moved over to the defensive side of the ball from his normal starting wide receiver spot to make his first career start at safety. He posted a game-high 12 tackles and had two pass breakups. The true sophomore also took snaps on offense. He is believed to be the first Oregon player to start on both sides of the ball in the same season since College Football Hall of Famer Mel Renfro (1961-63).
•OLB Torrodney Prevot had career highs in tackles (9) and sacks (2) and tied his career marks in breakups (2) and forced fumbles (1).
•Jeff Lockie made his third career start at quarterback - all this season. The Ducks are now 2-1 when the redshirt junior takes the first snap.
•Freeman’s 296 all-purpose yards were a career high.
•Freeman tied Jonathan Stewart (2005-07) for sixth in career rushing touchdowns with 27. His 30 total scores are good for ninth, breaking a tie with Keenan Howry (29, 1999-02).
•The win by WSU snapped the Ducks’ eight-game winning streak against the Cougars.
•With a pair of touchdown passes in the game, UO extended its NCAA-record streak to 74 consecutive games with a TD through the air.
•The Ducks had a season-high seven sacks, with six different players getting in on the action, including Jalen Jelks’ first career sack.
•Oregon has lost back-to-back home games for the first time since 2002 (Arizona State & USC).
•The Ducks are 3-3 through six games for the first time since 2004.
•UO had been 27-0 when leading after the third quarter since the start of 2013.
•Oregon rushed for over 400 yards for the second time this season, finishing with 410 on 50 carries.
Official Box Score