HALFTIME: Cougs gain late momentum

WASHINGTON STATE's offense appears to have established a trend during the first two games. The Cougars again struggled early before senior quarterback Connor Halliday led the Cougars to a pair of second-quarter scoring drives to reduce their halftime deficit to 14-10 on Friday night at Nevada.

The momentum shifted early when Halliday, who absorbed several vicious hits early, was intercepted by Kendall Johnson, who returned the ball 45 yards to the Cougars’ 12-yard line. Four plays later, Don Jackson scored on a 1-yard run to give Nevada a 7-0 lead.

That was just the start.

WSU’s defense, which did not surrender a first down on consecutive first-quarter drives, watched as Wolf Pack signal-caller Cody Fajardo took his team on a 91-yard touchdown drive. The big play came when Fajardo ran through the Cougars’ defense for a 55-yard gain on third-and-4 to their 8. Four plays later, Butler scored on a 1-yard run to increase Nevada’s lead to 14-0 with 10 minutes, 59 seconds, remaining in the second quarter.

Duran Workman then looked poised to make it worse when he intercepted a Halliday pass went off Rickey Galvin’s fingertips. But WSU’s defense responded with a three-and-out.

Enter Halliday.

Similar to last week’s 41-38 loss against Rutgers, Halliday established rhythm with his receivers during the second quarter as the Cougars cut their deficit in half when he found senior wide receiver Vince Mayle on a 13-yard touchdown with 7:15 left in the half. All five plays on the drive went for at least 11 yards. WSU then cut its deficit to 14-10 with 1:58 remaining on a 25-yard field goal by Erik Powell.


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