Cougar QB throws 74 passes, and the Cougars need every one to pull out a 45-38 double-overtime win over Oregon

ON THE FINAL THREE scoring drives, Washington State's quarterback was nothing short of compelling. After spending much of the game on idle, the Cougar offense cranked it into high gear, while Oregon scrambled to keep up.

An excellent showing in both overtimes, including three plays of the game (see below) brought home a 45-38 win.

CF.C player of the game: Luke Falk

Every time it looked like the Cougs would find a way to lose through dropped balls, missed opportunities or botched penalty calls (yes, big surprise with a Pac-12 crew), Falk did everything he could to get Washington State back into the game.  On WSU's final three scoring drives (last drive of the fourth quarter and the two in OT) Falk threw for 102 yards and two touchdowns.

Honorable Mention: Dom Williams

As much as the Twitterverse complains about the drops, the Cougs wouldn’t have had a chance without Williams’ hands -- and his left leg -- in the fourth quarter. Williams pinned a beautiful throw from Falk in his hands and against his left thigh with the one second left on the clock. Williams made up for every drop he had against Oregon with the one catch that mattered the most.

Surprises:

Washington State allowed 410 rushing yards and WON.  The Cougars scored 10 points in the fourth quarter in the final six minutes and the defense shut the door in the second overtime with Shalom Luani’s first interception of his career.

 

Falk didn’t throw an interception despite launching the ball 74 TIMES. Incredible.

 

Standout Stats:

  • WSU picked up another two takeaways to push its total to nine, more than the team had all of last season. The last turnover sealed the game, Luani intercepting Jeff Lockie in the end zone to finish off the second overtime. 


  • Falk completed 50 of 74 passes for 505 yards and five touchdowns, marking the his second 500-yard passing game of the season. It's also Falk's fourth straight 300+ yard game and the eighth 300-yard game of his career. Falk also had a rushing touchdown, his third of the season.


  • Ten Cougars caught a pass, and four of those Cougars caught a touchdown. Nine receivers had more than 25 yards for the game.


  • Gabe Marks was the only receiver over 100 yards with 111 and two touchdowns on eight receptions.


  • Dom Williams caught his 23rd career touchdown pass, good enough for No. 2 in WSU history.


  • Tavares Martin Jr. caught his first career touchdown pass, a 27-yarder in the third quarter to give the Cougs a 21-17 win.


  • Cougar scoring drives were compelling -- the longest was 3 minutes, 18 seconds, at the start of the game. The shortest drive was 90 seconds with the TD to Martin Jr. The Cougars final drives of both halves were eerily similar: 10 plays, 75 yards for 1:35 ending with a 4-yard TD to Marks near the end the first half, and a 12-play 70-yarder in 1:57, ending on an 8-yard TD to Dom Williams that sent the game to OT.

Leading tacklers

Luani, Parker Henry, Taylor Taliulu and Peyton Pelluer each posted eight tackles.

Misleading stat of the game: Third-down Conversions

The Cougars were 6 of 19 on third down, but 4 of 5 on fourth down. Incidentally, WSU's defense was terrific on third down, holding Oregon to 5 of 16, and 1 of 3 on fourth down.

Plays of the game:

 

  • Falk to Williams (see above).


  • Falk “audible” to Morrow: With the game on the line, the Cougars face a fourth-and-1 in OT, down 38-31. Falk ran up and said something to the offensive line. He then handed the ball to Morrow and the sophomore back pushed and battled for the first down. Two plays later, Falk scored the tying touchdown to force a second overtime.


  • Falk to Cracraft/Lewis for game-winning TD: Washington State faced third-and-goal at the 4 at the outset of the second overtime. Falk threw to River Cracraft who fought to the goal line, but as he was getting tackled and about to hit the ground, the ball popped from his hands and straight to Robert Lewis'. Lewis strolled into the end zone for the go-ahead score. Was it a fumble for a TD or a deflected reception for a TD? For WSU, no one cares how it's officially scored!


  • Luani's game-sealing interception: After the Cougars made great stops on the first three downs in the second overtime, Oregon was forced into fourth-and-long. Oregon QB Jeff Lockie was chased, evaded a tackler, then launched a ball into the end zone, where Luani easily made the pick.


Up Next: In Pullman, to face Oregon State for a 1 p.m. Homecoming game on the Pac-12 Networks.

Notable Notes:

  • Jamal Morrow and Gerard Wicks had career days with 68 and 64 yards, respectively. The Cougars rushed for 136 yards, their second 100-yard rushing game of the season. It is WSU's highest rushing total since going for 154 yards in 2011 against UCLA.


  • Each WSU scoring drive in regulation went at least 55 yards.


  • This is Washington State's first win over Oregon since 2006, and first in Eugene since 2003.


  • The last time WSU played in double OT was the Apple Cup of 2008.

Quotes from Coach Leach

  • On the game: “I thought it was important for us to play a full game. I think we played a full game on all three phases. We made it harder on ourselves than we needed to, but there are a lot of great players over there [on the Ducks] that made it tough too.”


  • On taking a knee before first OT: “There was no special message going into OT except to make sure we know what to do and that we do our jobs once we get going.”


  • On Morrow: “I thought he played well and brought some leadership to our team today.”


  • On the win: “It means we need to enjoy it for 20 hours, tell our grandchildren about it, and then move on and focus on Oregon State.”

RELATED: How they scored: Cougs vs. Ducks


Cougfan Top Stories