MADISON – All the constructive vibes and momentum Paul Chryst’s team appeared to generate with its season-opening victory vanished in a surprising loss Saturday at Camp Randall Stadium.
UW suffered three turnovers, the final a fumble by tight finish Clay Cundiff on the Washington State 12 late within the remaining quarter; dedicated 11 penalties for 106 yards, missed two discipline targets and struggled to transfer the ball persistently towards a Washington State team that entered the day 17 ½-point underdogs.
Washington State obtained sufficient massive performs from quarterback Cameron Ward and tailback Nakia Watson to grind out a 17-14 victory that shocked the gang of 74,100.
UW (1-1) concludes nonconference play subsequent week towards visiting New Mexico State, which took a 0-2 report into its sport Saturday night time at Texas-El Paso.
“A sport like this, everybody owns it,” Chryst mentioned. “Starting with myself and each individual in that locker room…
“This has obtained to be one which burns. Stings to the place it drives you to get higher.”
There wasn’t any ache for Washington State. The Cougars, coached by Kohler native Jake Dickert, improved to 2-0.
BOX SCORE:Washington State 17, Wisconsin 14
Ward accomplished 17 of 28 passes for 200 yards and a landing towards a UW protection that used as many as six defensive backs and as few linemen as one in sure schemes.
“I believe he is an effective quarterback,” Chryst mentioned. “We thought that moving into and nonetheless assume that as we speak.”
Watson, who performed two seasons at UW earlier than transferring, caught the game-winning 31-yard landing move and rushed 11 occasions for 34 yards and a landing towards his former teammates.
Safety John Torchio pointed to too many missed tackles, together with some that he missed, as a problem.
“I come off as calm,” he mentioned. “But belief me, this stings lots. This sucks. This is a horrible feeling. Obviously now we have to push ahead and deal with our subsequent opponent.
“But you are feeling this for the remainder of the season. You really feel this damage. Losing at dwelling.”
Quarterback Graham Mertz accomplished 18 of 27 passes for 227 yards and two touchdowns, with one interception.
However, UW’s floor sport was stymied for many of the day.
Braelon Allen managed 98 yards on 21 carries and Chez Mellusi completed with 44 yards on 9 carries.
And the penalties have been brutal.
The offensive line was accountable for 5 for 56 yards. Tight finish Hayden Rucci was known as for a block within the again on a 26-yard run by Skyler Bell. Cundiff was assessed a private foul (15 yards) for pulling a participant off a pile on the finish of a play.
“You’ve obtained to clear it up,” Mertz mentioned. “We realized that as we speak.”
The penalty by Cundiff, after a Washington State defender intercepted a move by Mertz however nearly instantly misplaced the ball on a fumble, moved the ball from the Washington State 20 to the 35. Two performs later, Cundiff fumbled after a 24-yard achieve to the 12
“I’ve simply obtained to watch out in the course of the sphere,” mentioned Cundiff, who had landing catches of 17 and 10 yards.
Members of UW’s protection knew earlier than kickoff that they had to include Ward and Watson.
Watson scored on a 2-yard run within the second quarter to give the Cougars a 7-0 lead and gained 11 yards on a second and 6 late within the sport to decide up an important first down that helped the Cougars run out the ultimate 5 minutes 14 seconds.
He broke the tried sort out of security Kamo’i Latu on the UW 30 on his 31-yard landing reception.
“I’ve obtained to make the sort out,” Latu mentioned.
Wisconsin’s offense gradual to begin however Graham Mertz’s TD to Clay Cundiff will get Badgers on board
UW’s offense sputtered on its first three collection, producing simply 100 yards on 33 performs (3.3-yard common), and the Badgers confronted a 7-0 deficit with 9:10 left within the first half.
Bobby Engram’s unit took over on the UW 35 after Washington State’s Colton Theaker drove the kickoff out of bounds.
The Badgers took benefit of the sphere place by driving 65 yards in simply six performs and three:05 for a landing to forge a 7-7 tie.
Mertz capped the drive with a beautiful move to Cundiff for a 17-yard rating with 6:05 left within the half.
UW obtained the ball again at its 38 again after Washington State went three and out however a private foul on left sort out Jack Nelson (palms to the face) finally left the offense in a first-and-25 gap.
The Badgers finally punted and Andy Vujnovich and Dean Engram mixed to pin the Cougars at their 4, as Engram caught the punt cleanly.
With simply 1:33 on the clock, Washington State remained aggressive offensively and tried to move on all three downs.
After a 9-yard achieve on first down, Ward was sacked for a 6-yard loss to the 7 by Latu to arrange third and seven with 1:09 left.
Cornerback Cedrick Dort then broke up a brief move on third down and the Cougars lined up to punt with 1:06 left and UW with one timeout left.
Wisconsin goes into halftime on a excessive be aware with one other Cundiff landing
The Badgers drove 45 yards for the go-ahead landing in 5 performs, with Mertz hitting two big throws.
He threw a strike to Keontez Lewis for 40 yards to the Washington State 5 on third and 10. That left Mertz at 5 for 8 for 79 yards, with 5 conversions, on third down.
A primary-down incompletion and delay-of-game penalty left UW dealing with second and 10 however Mertz gave UW the lead with a 10-yard move to Cundiff with 20 seconds left within the half.
Defensive finish Brennan Jackson got here unblocked off the left aspect of the UW formation however Mertz did not panic and threw a strike to Cundiff to assist UW take a 14-7 halftime lead.
Washington State’s particular groups get massive play within the third quarter
Washington State’s particular groups generated the primary massive play of the second half when Renard Bell returned Jack Van Dyke’s kickoff 73 yards to the UW 27.
The Cougars finally settled for a 26-yard discipline aim by Dean Janikowski to pull inside 14-10 with 11:20 left within the third quarter.
UW went three and out, however the Cougars obtained the ball again at their 27 after a 53-yard punt by Vujnovich and a terrific sort out by Latu, which resulted in a return of minus-2 yards.
The Cougars confronted third and 10 from their 47 once they caught a break that stored alive a drive that finally resulted in a landing.
Latu pressured Ward into an errant throw, which was intercepted by cornerback Jay Shaw. Shaw fumbled, nevertheless, and the Cougars recovered on the UW 49.
Washington State’s Cameron Ward and Nakia Watson make the most of Wisconsin’s turnover
Six performs later, Ward hit Watson within the flat and the previous UW tailback spun away from Latu on the 30 and had clear crusing into the top zone to assist the Cougars take a 17-14 lead with 5:12 left within the quarter.
UW then overcame holding calls towards proper sort out Logan Brown and middle Joe Tippman to drive to the Washington State 31 however the drive stalled on the 25 and Vito Calvaruso, who missed from 51 yards within the first half, missed from 43 yards on the primary play of the fourth quarter.
The Cougars took over at their 25 however went three and out, with exterior linebacker Nick Herbig recording an enormous sack on third and 5.
UW took over at its 35 after the punt, with 13:01 left.
The Badgers overcame extra penalties and finally confronted first at 10 on the Cougars’ 35 with 6:42 left.
Cundiff discovered a gap within the Washington State zone and Mertz threw an correct move however Cundiff did not defend the ball.
With Ward and Watson making massive performs, the Cougars ran out the ultimate 5:14 to give Dickert an enormous homecoming current.
“I did not even need to take my pads off,” Herbig mentioned when requested in regards to the loss. “It sucks. Honestly, I do not need to be right here proper now.
“But it’s what it’s. We misplaced. They have been the higher team as we speak. We’ve obtained to take it to the chin as we speak and transfer on.”
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