WITH ALL THE talk about the Cougars taking steps forward in each game this season, they took a step back on Friday night. The Stanford defense overwhelmed the Cougar offensive line and held Connor Halliday to his lowest passing yard total of the season.
CF.C Players of the Game
Only one player on offense truly stood out above the rest -- wide receiver River Cracraft
. The sophomore hauled in a WSU single-game record 14 receptions for 100 receiving yards, leading all receivers.
As for the Cougar D, one that kept Stanford from putting the game out of reach until late in the fourth quarter, cornerback Daquawn Brown
gets the vote. He made five tackles, all solo, with one for loss. The statistics sheet only showed one pass break-up, but he was glued to receivers for most of the night. Linebacker Jeremiah Allison
also turned in an impressive performance with nine total tackles, seven of which were solo, and a sack. And Peyton Pelluer
saw a good amount of turns, posting a career-high eight tackles.
, 9; Allison 9; Pelluer, 8.
Biggest surprises for the Cougars
It wasn't a surprise the Cougar o-line would have their hands full with Stanford's D. It was a surprise though how thoroughly dominated they were. Stanford regularly got pressure with four and Halliday rarely had a comfortable pocket from which to set up shop and let routes develop.
WSU did not kick away from Ty Montgomery, who was allowed to return three kicks and three punts, despite being regarded as one of the best return men in the country. WSU didn't give up a special teams touchdown this time, but he did rack up 134 total return yards on those six attempts.
All three of the Cougars’ scoring drives lasted longer than 10 plays, with the longest a 16-play TD drive. Offensive line coach Clay McGuire had said during the week that the Stanford defense was not one that fatigued easily, so long drives featuring short, precision passes were likely.
The Cougars played without wide receivers Dom Williams, Rickey Galvin, and Kristoff Williams. The latter two were limited this week in practice; however, the former was active in practice for the majority of the week.
Halliday threw for "only" 292 yards on Friday, 231 yards less than the Cougars’ average passing yardage this season.
Jamal Morrow, Gerard Wicks and Theron West all received time in the game but they had only a combined seven carries, netting 30 yards.
That was the first time the Cougar running backs had been held to 30 hashes on the ground since the Rutgers game, when they totaled 22 net rushing yards.
Counting the four Cougar quarterback sacks, WSU’s had minus-26 yards to Stanford's 193.
Stanford topped WSU in total offense 477-266.
The Cougars averaged only 3.3 yards per play, 7 yards per completion, and minus-2.4 per rush.
Freshman punter Jordan Dascalo punted eight times on Friday, averaging 42 yards per punt and kicking four of them for 50-plus yards. His longest traveled 56 yards but there were also at least two that were not clean boots and gave Stanford good field position.
All three of the Cardinal’s receiving touchdowns went to tight ends.
Isiah Myers caught eight passes, moving into a tie for ninth place in WSU history with 139 career receptions.
The scariest play of the night came in the third quarter when cornerback Charleston White collided with teammate Darius Lemora when both were trying to defend a pass near the end zone. The pass fell incomplete and resulted in Stanford turning the ball over on downs, but White fell to the ground and lay there while trainers attended to him while teammates close to him took a knee and removed their helmets. Eventually he rose up and was helped off the field and rode the cart to the locker room. He didn't return. Pat Porter came in and took his place, recording his first career pass breakup and finished with two tackles
Linebacker Darryl Monroe was hurt on a sack of Kevin Hogan in the first quarter. It was a dual sack recorded with Darryl Paulo. Monroe returned to the game and finished with five total tackles.
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