Sour Apples; Cougs Fall to UW

Jake Brown threw for 292 yards and 3 touchdowns, and the Husky running game added 168 yards as the Huskies use a huge first quarter to dominate their 3rd straight Apple Cup 42-17 in Pullman.

In possible the biggest Apple Cup in history, the stage was set for the #5 rank Huskies and #23 Ranked Cougars to battle in a classic for the right to go to the Pac-12 Championship.  This Apple Cup was everything but that, the Cougs came in like a team who had nothing to play for and just looked over matched both offensively and defensively.

In the Huskies opening drive the game, quarterback Jake Browning drove the huskies 76 yards sparked by a 50 yard pass from receiver Dante Pettis to Darrell Daniels and Myles Gaskin punched to in from two yards out to give Washington the early 7-0 lead. On the Cougs first possession, Jamal Morrow fumbled the ball and the Huskies had the ball Cougar territory.  A few plays later, Browning found Pettis from 18 yards out to put the Dawgs up 2 touchdowns.  On the following Husky drive, Browning found Pettis in single coverage and the corner Darrien Molton fell down and Pettis strolled into the end zone for the 60 yard touchdown.  Browning then found John Ross from 6 yards out on the next drive to put the Huskies up 28-3 after the first quarter.

It sprinkled in the first and second quarter, and for some reason, the past two seasons this team just has trouble getting anything going offensively in the rain.  The way this Husky offense came out of the gate early, the Cougar offense needed to match scores, but they just couldn’t get the flow like they have the majority of the season.  On the Huskies first put of the game, Jamal Morrow returned the punt 64 Yards to the Cougar 6 and the Cougs were in business.  Wazzu ran on 4 straight plays, and on 4th and goal from the 1 yard line, Gerard wick was stopped, and the Cougs came up empty.  Following a John Ross fumble, Jamal Morrow punched it in from a yard out to give the Cougs some life.  As it seemed to go all game, the Huskies had an answer for everything that the Cougars brought.  Browning marched the Huskies right down the field in just under 2 minutes, ending in a Lavon Coleman 22 yard touchdown run.

In the last minute of the half, the Cougs were trying to score on consecutive drive, but Falk’s Pass in the end zone on 2nd down was intercepted, and the Huskies led 35-10 at half time.  The Cougs came out of the half with hopes of getting back in the ball game.  Their opening drive of the half marched the ball down in just over 6 minutes and Falk connected with Gabe Marks from 9 yards out, to give WSU some life.  Following a Husky punt, the Cougs had a chance to really put this game in reach, but on 4th and goal from 1, Gerard Wick was stuffed.  That was the last Cougs gasp to try and get back in the game, but the UW defense was just too tough on this day.

Coach Leach, Gabe Marks, and Luke Falk and said that their execution wasn’t where it needed to be.  This is the Cougs 7th Apple Cup loss in the last 8 years.  The game that is usually competitive, just hasn’t been the last 3 years, and with some of the best Cougar teams in history.  The Cougs right now are looking at the Vegas Bowl, KRAFT Fight Hunger Bowl, and a repeat trip to the Sun Bowl.  This Will be the Gabe Marks and possible Luke Falk’s final game; so next year’s Cougar team will have a different look to it.  Something to take away from this game would have to be the defense.  The defense just doesn’t seem to be able to stop top 25 teams and look weaker.  It will be good to get a gauge on how they are going to fix this problem and who they have coming in later this winter.

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Zenon Thornton

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