Huskies right the tilting kennel
Five interceptions, two for TD's hurt Beavers
By: Richard Linde, Posted 9 November 2002
Playing in a mixed-bag of weather at Seattle, the Washington Huskies beat the OSU Beavers, 41-29, riding the arm of Cody Pickett, who passed for 262 yards, while going against the number one pass defense in the conference. However, the Huskies' defense stole the show, forcing Derek Anderson into five interceptions, two of which went for touchdowns, one returned by Derrick Johnson and the other by Chris Massey. Steven Jackson rushed for 135 yards on the day.
Previously, Washington had lost three-straight Pac-10 conference games. Although the Beavers won the statistics battle, the Huskies won the war, not turning the the ball over via fumble or interception.
The opening moments had some déjà vu about them.
After starting from its own 20, Washington failed to move the ball after the opening kickoff, going three and out. Replacing Derek McLaughlin because of his poor punting this season, John Anderson shanked a 16-yard punt that ended up on the Washington 38. The Beavers managed to move the ball to the Husky 32-yard line, and then settled for a 50-yard field goal by Kirk Yliniemi.
McLaughlin handled the punting chores the rest of the day.
On the next series, the Huskies tied the score, 3-3, on John Anderson's 23-yard field goal.
What looked to be another dismal start for the Dawgs, so characteristic of some of their losses this season, was put to rest briefly by an interception, by way of Derrick Johnson on the Washington 49-yard line; however, the offense went three-and-out and was forced to punt.
On the subsequent drive by the Beavers, Derek Anderson hooked up with James Newsom for a 60-yard touchdown pass play with 4:54 left in the first quarter. OSU took a 10-3 lead.
Later in the quarter, an eleven yard touchdown pass from Pickett to Reggie Williams capped an eighty-yard drive, to tie the score at 10-10. That drive was the Huskies' best of the season.
Derrick Johnson's first interception had been a preview of things to come.
On his second interception of the day, Johnson returned an Anderson pass, 42 yards for a touchdown, and Washington took the lead, 17-10.
And that’s the way the first quarter ended, with Washington holding the lead.
At 12:43 in the second quarter, Chris Massey filched an Anderson pass for a 24-yard interception return, making the score 24-10.
After a holding penalty kept their drive alive, the Beavers’ Kirk Yliniemi booted a 43-yard field goal to make the score, 24-13.
Steven Jackson’s running made all the difference for the Beavers in the game, when Derek Anderson was struggling, being intercepted three times in the first half, two of them for touchdowns.
The Beavers managed to cut the Huskies' lead to 24-22 before the half ended, thanks to a 13-yard run by Jackson and another Yliniemi field goal.
Near the end of the half, Kevin Ware took a 36-yard pass play from Cody Pickett, the play going to the Beavers’ 19. On the next play, Pickett connected with Rich Alexis on a quick post, which took the ball to the one-yard line, on an easy throw and catch. Alexis scored on the next play, and after John Anderson’s PAT, the Huskies led 31-22, with 43 seconds left in the half. The 79-yard drive was the second long drive for the Huskies in the half.
Pickett passed for 197 yards in the first half, going against the best pass defense in the league. Previously, the Beavers had been holding their opponents to199 yards passing per game.
To start the second half, starting from their own 20 yard line, the Beavers managed to pick up two first downs, then punted to the Dawgs, which took over on their own 37.
On the subsequent drive, the Huskies drove to the Beavers' 3-yard line, where a holding penalty gave the Dawgs a first down on the one. Alexis bulled into the endzone on the next play, capping a 63-yard drive that took 11 plays. The Dawgs led 38-22.
Starting from its own 20, OSU answered the Huskies' touchdown with an 80 yard scoring drive that took 15 plays, making the score, 38-29.
The two teams played a game of field position from then on.
After their long, scoring drive, the Beavers held Washington to a three and out, Charles Frederick having run the kickoff back to the Washington 13. Then Derrick McLaughlin launched one of his best punts of the day, nailing a 48-yarder, which put the Beavers back on their 35-yard line. The Huskies held the Beavers to a three and out and got the ball back on their own 28, but managed only one first down.
Punting from his own 25, McLaughlin launched his best punt of the year, which was downed on the OSU 2-yard line, a 57-yard punt.
The third quarter ended with the Huskies leading, 38-29.
After OSU worked the ball to their own 24, Ben Mahdavi intercepted a Derek Anderson pass on the OSU 38. After a holding penalty killed a 3-play drive, John Anderson booted a 52-yard field goal, his longest of the season, and the U-Dub took a 41-29 lead.
Andy Rothenfluh replaced Derek Anderson at quarterback for the Beavers' final drive, and the Beavers turned the ball over on downs at the Husky 29-yard line.
In his 20th game as a Dawg, Cody Pickett took over as the number one passer in Husky history, replacing Brock Huard for career passing yards.
The Beavers have lost 8-straight conference games on the road.
Going against one of the best defenses in the conference, the Huskies' offense struggled, posting seven three-and-outs for the day.