Cameron Ward threw four touchdown passes, three to Josh Kelly, and No. 21 Washington State held off a late rally to defeat No. 14 Oregon State 38-35 in the Pac-12 Conference opener for both teams Saturday in Pullman, Wash.
The game was called the de facto “Pac-2” championship, as the victorious Cougars (4-0, 1-0 Pac-12) and Beavers (3-1, 0-1) are the only schools who haven’t announced their intentions to leave the conference after this year.
Oregon State’s DJ Uiagalelei threw a 5-yard touchdown pass to Jack Velling with 1:12 remaining, but the Cougars recovered the ensuing onside kick and ran out the clock.
Ward was 28-of-34 passing for 404 yards. Kelly made eight receptions for 159 yards, and Kyle Williams had seven catches for 174 yards and a score.
Kelly’s third touchdown was a one-handed grab in the corner of the end zone on a 19-yard pass from Ward, giving the Cougars a 35-14 lead with 5:15 left in the third quarter.
Uiagalelei, a transfer from Clemson, scored on a 26-yard run with 14:14 remaining to pull the Beavers within 14 points.
A 44-yard field goal by Washington State’s Dean Janikowski with 9:12 left extended the lead to 38-24.
Oregon State’s Deshaun Fenwick scored his third touchdown on a 4-yard run with 6:18 left to make it 38-28, then the Beavers made a goal-line stand to get the ball back for their final score.
Uiagalelei completed 17 of 34 passes for 198 yards with one touchdown and one interception and added 61 yards rushing on nine attempts. Fenwick rushed for a game-high 101 yards on 11 carries, with Damien Martinez adding 81 yards on 17 rushes.
The Cougars took a 28-14 halftime lead as Ward was 19-of-20 passing for 293 yards and three scores.
Ward threw a 63-yard scoring strike to Williams on the game’s second play from scrimmage, and then the quarterback tallied on a 1-yard run midway through the first quarter to give Washington State a 14-0 lead.
The Beavers answered with a 38-yard touchdown run by Fenwick.
Ward hit Kelly for a 44-yard touchdown on the first play of the second quarter to make it 21-7.
Fenwick scored on a 9-yard run to pull the Beavers within a touchdown, before Ward threw an 11-yard touchdown pass to Kelly over the middle with 10 seconds remaining before halftime to make it 28-14.
–Field Level Media