The offense was very balanced for Washington as their newfound ground game looked strong with Alexis carrying the bulk of the load. Out of 76 total plays, Washington ran 40 times. The Husky defense absolutely stymied the Cardinal offense from the first drive of the third quarter on, and intercepted QB Trent Edwards twice.
The Huskies are now 3-1, 1-0 in the Pac-10 and travel to Pasadena to play UCLA next weekend.
1st Quarter – Third down defensive woes - A blown coverage by Washington resulted in Stanford picking up 19 yards on a third and long pass into the flat to TB Kenneth Tolon to keep their initial drive alive. A Husky offside penalty nullified a third down stop, further helping the Cardinal. Trent Edwards threw to Mark Bradford to pick up 10 more on a third and nine. One play later Edwards hit TE Alex Smith for a 12-yard touchdown and the Cards had the crowd silent three minutes into the contest.
A Cody Pickett fumble on Washington's next possession was recovered by Stanford's John Sharff. The Husky defense was able to force the Cardinal three and out, however.
The Huskies hit a perfect quick hitter call, and Rich Alexis went 53 yards right up the middle to knot the game at 7-all. After a Pickett sack, facing 2nd and 16, Todd Bachert, Tusi Sa'au, and Dan Dicks did the job of clearing out the middle of the Cardinal defense and Alexis took it to the house with just over 5:00 remaining in the quarter.
2nd Quarter – lightning strikes - The first play of the second quarter was a big one. Facing a third and four, Pickett hit Reggie Williams on a quick out. Reggie made the catch, made one quick move and then outran the Cardinal secondary for a 74-yard touchdown to put the Huskies on top 14-7. The Huskies had only 15 passing yards up to that play, relying mostly on Rich Alexis's ground attack.
Another tough penalty, this one on Evan Benjamin for a helmet to helmet hit, converted yet another third-down for Stanford. The Cardinal made the most of it as it culminated in another Edwards to Smith touchdown, this one across the middle from 18 yards out to tie it at 14-all. The last three plays of that 82-yard drive went for 20, 17, and 18 against a bewildered Husky secondary.
Washington was marching on another drive to take the lead back, but Pickett fumbled on a keeper at the Cardinal 9, his second turnover of the game. The two teams entered the tunnel tied at 14-all at the half.
3rd Quarter – grind it out - The quarter was largely consumed by two drives. Stanford broke the tie on the first possession of the second half, on a 28-yard field goal to take the lead. The drive consumed 7 minutes. Washington's defense came up big, twice in a row. On first and goal from the three, a sack by linebacker Tyler Krambrink looked to be huge, but a pass interference penalty on cornerback Roc Alexander on third down gave the Cardinal a new set of downs at the Husky two. The Husky defense stood tall, keeping Stanford out of the end zone and forcing them to settle for three.
Washington came right back, using Pickett connections to TE Jon Lyon for 11, Williams for 23, and Charles Frederick for 11, to move the ball down field. On third and three from the Cardinal six, Pickett hit Reggie Williams for his second touchdown of the game to give the Huskies the lead back. Pickett hit on five of his six throws on the drive and Alexis added 20 more ground yards as the Huskies ate up over five minutes of clock.
|UW vs STANFORD GAME GALLERY|
Charles Frederick then made his best return of the season, taking the ball on his own 20 and returning it all the way to the Cardinal 34, a 47-yard jaunt. Washington faced a 4th and one on the Cardinal 25 and the Stanford defense stuffed Alexis for a 2-yard loss to keep them in the game. Safety Trevor Hooper crashed in to nail him in the backfield with 2:54 remaining.
It was time for the Husky defense to make a big stop. They did it in a big way. On third and 10, Edwards threw a deep out but Husky corner Derrick Johnson intercepted it and took it down the sideline for a 36-yard back-breaking touchdown with 2:32 left.
Johnson sat out the entire first half, by coach's decision. He made his second half a memorable one.
Jimmy Newell put an end to the final Stanford drive with an interception on the Dawgs 40 yard line.
Quotes from the Husky players, Keith Gilbertson, and our Dawgtracker feature will be posted later this evening from Husky Stadium.