PULLMAN -- Intensity. Perhaps no word better describes Washington State's first practice in full pads this afternoon. But even full pads couldn't help the defense overcome a dominant performance by quarterback Jeff Tuel and an offensive line that consistently opened holes for the running game.

There were no mind-boggling hits during the afternoon session, but high intensity and guys lowering their shoulders into bodies was on full display. That was exhibited by junior Carl Winston, who was playing with the second team at running back. On three consecutive running plays, he lowered his body and plowed his way through the defensive line for extra yards.

The team has not normally scrimmaged this early in camp over the previous seasons, but Wulff said it allows for a much quicker learning curve.

"We wanted to get out and tackle and get live situations as early in camp as we can," Wulff said. "If we get a few kids nicked up here and there they'll have time to heal and it's nice to really get this in because it's a lot easier to teach them moving forward."

When starters on both sides competed against each other on the first drive, Tuel went a perfect 4-of-4 for 40 yards, highlighted by a 20-yard catch by wide receiver Jared Karstetter down the sideline. Tuel's last throw of the drive was a 5-yard catch by wide receiver Marquess Wilson which appeared to be good for a touchdown, but Wulff called the play short and the offense settled for a 30-yard field goal from Andrew Furney.

On the second drive, Tuel connected on all three of his passes. That series culminated in a 37-yard field goal by Furney.

"Defense had a real good day yesterday which was frustrating on the offensive part but we came out here today and came with our lunch pails and went to work as Coach (Todd) Sturdy likes to say," Tuel said.

THE OFFENSE'S SUCCESS was more than just Tuel's performance. From left to right, David Gonzales, John Fullington, Andrew Roxas, B.J. Guerra and Wade Jacobson consistently protected Tuel and created space for the running backs. Redshirt freshman Rickey Galvin and senior Logwone Mitz both shared time with the first unit and took advantage of the line's play.

Galvin showed off his elusiveness and quick feet on several plays, including an 11-yard run during the second series. Galvin also added an 8-yard reception later in the drive, which would have resulted in a touchdown had linebacker Alex Hoffman-Ellis not made a shoe-string tackle.

Roxas, a senior center, credits the line's experience and dedication over the summer to their high-level play in camp.

"We're gelling and communicating and everyone's working on our main goal which is to get to a bowl game," he said. "We've been focusing on getting our pads down, that's the biggest emphasis with us, and being aggressive out there."

THE SECOND-TEAM OFFENSE, which was led by quarterbacks Marshall Lobbestael and Connor Halliday, also experienced success. Wide receiver Gino Simone had several good catches over the middle, while true freshman wide receiver Dominique Williams had the best play of fall camp thus far.

Halliday was forced out of the pocket and saw Williams lined up one-on-one against cornerback Tracy Clark. Halliday threw while on the run, and heaved a bomb downfield. Williams was still running at full speed when he turned, saw the ball and leaped high in the air with Clark and somehow managed to secure it close to his body as both he and Clark tumbled to the ground.

A bright spot for the defense however was the play of defensive end Lenard Williams. Williams had two "sacks" and frequently provided pressure. His day ended short after banging bodies with the offensive line following a running play, but he was able to walk off on his own and the injury didn't appear serious.

  • The Cougars will have their first set of two-a-day practices tomorrow with the morning session scheduled for 8:30 a.m. and the afternoon session set for 2:30 p.m.

  • Linebacker C.J. Mizell was held out of practice because he missed the first full day of workouts -- his absence was excused -- and coaches wanted to keep him out of full contact. With Mizell gone, Mike Ledgerwood saw the action with the first team at middle linebacker, and was joined by weakside linebacker Alex Hoffman-Ellis and strongside linebacker Sekope Kaufusi.

  • The first team defensive line included ends Travis Long and Adam Coerper and tackles Brandon Rankin and Anthony Laurenzi. Defensive tackle Toni Pole did not practice Thursday, and his status was not available at press time. But he was seen in uniform and doing some conditioning work. Defensive end Ian Knight was not on the field at the begginning of practice, but made his way onto the gridiron later on.


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