Oregon State stands in the way of WSU

SAM HEIKELL | Evergreen reporter

After WSU’s (2-0) triple overtime comeback win last week, they will look to get their third straight win of the season against Oregon State (1-2) this Saturday.

The Beavers have struggled early, coming off a 48-14 defeat at home against Minnesota and lost to Colorado State in their season opener. In between those games, they were barely able to squeak by Portland State 35-32 for their only win so far this season.

Led by Head Coach Gary Andersen, the Beavers will be without their two starting cornerbacks, sophomore Xavier Crawford and junior Dwayne Williams. Crawford injured his shoulder last week against Minnesota, while Williams tore his ACL, which will keep him out for the remainder of the season.

The Cougars got their second win of the season against Boise State last Saturday, with a final score of 47-44 in triple overtime. WSU fell behind 21 points in the fourth quarter, but battled back to send the game into overtime.

Redshirt senior running back Jamal Morrow finished the game after carrying a 22-yard pass into a corner of the end zone.

“I think we finished the game and found a way to win, which I don’t think hardly any other teams in the country would have done,” Leach said. “But I don’t think we played well on offense and I think we’ve got to play better.”

Despite the win, Leach was not pleased with his offense for the better half of the game, as they didn’t score an offensive touchdown until the fourth quarter.

Leach felt his receivers, offensive line and running backs bared the brunt of the trouble.

In the third quarter, Leach took his redshirt senior quarterback, Luke Falk out of the game and put in redshirt sophomore quarterback Tyler Hilinski for one drive. Hilinski completed his first four passes before taking a 20-yard sack and then throwing an interception on the ensuing play.

“I just wanted Luke to see how easy it was out there,” Leach said. “And it was — until Tyler tried to do too much and threw an interception.”

Later in the fourth quarter, Falk went down and hit his head hard on the turf. He was out for the rest of the game for precautionary reasons. However, he will be ready to go Saturday against Oregon State.

“Luke is an elite quarterback,” Andersen said, “and he’s proven that for a long time.”

Kickoff is scheduled for 2:30 p.m. Saturday at Martin Stadium.