Two-minute drill: Tigers 31, Cougars 24

WASHINGTON STATE OPENED with a thriller, but three turnovers proved too much to overcome in a hostile road environment as they lost 31-24 Saturday against Auburn at Jordan-Hare Stadium.

TURNING POINT: Connor Halliday threw his third interception of the game late in the fourth quarter with the Cougars at the Auburn 8-yard line and trailing by just a touchdown.

DEFENSIVE PLAYS OF THE GAME: Auburn's Robenson Therezie intercepted Halliday's pass in the end zone with just 4:46 minutes remaining. For WSU, safety Taylor Taliulu came up with a fumble at midfield that gave Holliday a final opportunity to send the game into overtime.

OFFENSIVE PLAY OF THE GAME: Bobby Ratliff's 53-yard reception in the second quarter helped give the Cougars a 21-15 lead.

UNEXPECTED DEVELOPMENT: WSU had some success running the ball. The Cougars have been abysmal in that area in recent years, but produced 120 yards on 23 carries. Jeremiah Laufasa also had two short-yardage rushing touchdowns.

INTERESTING STAT: The Cougars produced 464 yards of total offense. Any question about how much the offense has improved from last season seems to have been answered.

MEANINGLESS STAT OF THE GAME: WSU won the time-of-possession statistic, which could have benefited the Cougars' defense in the humidity. But that can be attributed to the explosive touchdowns WSU allowed on special teams and defense.

MONDAY MORNING QUARTERBACKING: Halliday still needs to improve his decision making. While some mistakes are expected when the Cougars throw more than 60 times per game, Halliday's three interceptions were too much for WSU to overcome on the road.

WSU 7-0
10:43: Jeremiah Laufasa 4-yard touchdown run (Andrew Furney kick) capping a 12-play, 75-yard drive. Key play: Dominique Williams with a 29-yard reception down to Auburn 4-yard line.

Auburn 8-7
2:26: Tre Mason 8-yard touchdown run (Ryan White run). Key play: Justin Therezie intercepts Connor Halliday to give the Tigers possession at the Cougars' 28.

WSU 14-8
8:02: Bobby Ratliff 7-yard touchdown pass from Halliday (Furney kick). Key play: Marcus Mason takes a screen pass 13 yards from Halliday on third-and-9.

Auburn 15-14
7:46: Mason 100-yard kickoff return for touchdown (Cody Parkey kick). WSU 21-15
6:18: Laufasa 1-yard touchdown run (Furney kick). Key play: Bobby Ratliff 53-yard reception from Halliday to Auburn 1-yard line.

Auburn 22-21
6:06: Corey Grant 75-yard touchdown run (Parkey kick).

Auburn 25-21
1:11: Parkey 47-yard FG. Key play: Kristoff Williams was unable to corral a 4th-and-2 pass, which gave the Tigers possession at the Cougars' 45.

Auburn 28-21
6:51: Parkey 26-yard FG. Key play: Questionable 34-yard reception by Sammie Coates – he did not appear to have possession of the ball when he landed out of bounds – pushed Auburn down to the WSU 18.

Auburn 28-24
4:18: Furney 43-yard FG. Key plays: Three rushing plays on drive of at least 10 yards.

Auburn 31-24
9:07: Parkey 42-yard FG. Key play: Cameron Artis-Payne with 19-yard run on third-and-1.

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