Seattle, WA — Deshaun Fenwick rushed for two scores on just five carries, but the Washington Huskies slipped by the 23rd-ranked Oregon State, 24-21, in Husky Stadium.
The Huskies (7-2, 4-2 Pac-12) won its third straight and kept alive its hopes of finding a spot in Las Vegas in the conference title game. Michael Penix Jr. was 30 of 52 for 298 yards and hit Jack Westover for a 24-yard touchdown pass on third-and-goal in the third quarter to tie the game.
Peyton Henry made a 22-yard field goal with eight seconds left to cap a 92-yard scoring drive, and Washington was able to hold off the Beavers.
Washington got the ball at their own three yard line with 4:33 left in the game and Penix marched his team downfield against the Beavers’ stingy defense. Penix was 9 of 13 for 66 yards on the drive, including key third-down conversions to Devin Culp, Ja’Lynn Polk and a diving sliding catch by Cameron Davis. Penix’s pass to Giles Jackson for 12-yards got the Huskies to the Beavers 2. The Huskies had to settle for a short field goal and Henry smashed the winning kick.
“We knew if we gave them the ball back we probably wouldn’t have got it back,” Penix said. “We wanted to make sure that we took advantage of that drive and make sure we got down there and got some points on the board. And it was great that we took up all that clock.”
The second touchdown run by Fenwick gave Oregon State a 21-14 advantage, but the Huskies answered with the game’s final 10 points to take the win on Friday night.
Damien Martinez led the Beaver offense with 107 yards on the ground on 19 attempts.
The Beavers (6-3, 3-3) blew two opportunities in the first half going for it on fourth downs deep in Washington’s end of the field and failed to convert. The windy, blustery conditions made kicking a nightmare, but failing to get points on those drives came back to bite Oregon State in the behind.
Oregon State was led defensively by Omar Speights, who had nine tackles – six of which were solo stops – and broke up a pass. Alex Austin and Kitan Oladapo each collected six tackles, five being solo ones, which was playing its first game ranked in The AP Top 25 since the 2013 season opener.
Fenwick crossed the goal line on rushes of two and 19 yards and Easton Mascarenas-Austin returned an interception for a score.
“Credit to those guys for finishing the game better than we did ultimately,” Oregon State coach Jonathan Smith said. “It was back-and-forth battling. Some missed opportunities out there and they made one or two more plays than us.”
Ben Gulbranson threw for 66 yards on 11 completions.
Wayne Taulapapa ran for two touchdowns for the Huskies, the second coming early in the fourth quarter to knot the game at 21-21. Rome Odunze had seven receptions for 102 yards.
“It just gives us that mentality that we’re gonna go out there and fight no matter what,” Odunze said.
The game wasn’t without some typical late-night Pac-12 craziness. Blustery winds affected the passing and kicking game all night and the game was stopped for 25 minutes early in the fourth quarter after partial power outage took down some of the stadium lights illuminating the field.
“That was the biggest thing I was probably trying to address with the guys is how hard they had fought to make it a 21-21 score,” Washington coach Kalen DeBoer said. “And we had just gained the momentum and just to get their minds back on how it felt.”
Oregon State: The Beavers host California next Saturday.
Washington: The Huskies are at No. 8 Oregon next Saturday.