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Bereft Bears left bowl 'Bear' on a drive for the ages
Huskies keep bowl hopes alive, squash Cal's
Malamute, 27 November 2010

With 4:39 left on the clock, Jake Locker led the Washington Huskies on a 79-yard, time-consuming, come-from-behind, touchdown drive to secure a 16-13 victory over the Cal Bears in the rain and hail at Memorial Stadium, Berkeley.

Serve up another tasty morsel by the Dawgs' artful chef -- a drive de jour -- on a cold, wet field al fresco, that rivaled the two drives that led to wins over USC the last two years.

Historically speaking, this drive mollifies the painful memory of Don Heinrich's fumble on the Cal two-yard line that cost Washington (8-2) a trip to the Rose Bowl in 1950. With its win sixty years later, UW eliminated California from bowl contention.

The Huskies are now one win away from a bowl after eight years of stupefying bowl deprivation and a gut-wrenching, naught-for-12 season in 2008.

This drive, one for the ages, pitted the conference's number six offense against the league's second best defense.

On the drive, Chris Polk (photo above) converted a third and two from the Huskies' 29, on a run that gained 5 yards, on a day when the Huskies converted just 4 of 14 third down attempts, in a league where Washington ranks last in third down conversions.

On the drive's long gainer, Locker completed a 46-yard pass to Jermaine Kearse, who made a spectacular, sliding catch on the ball at the Cal 20.

After Jesse Callier ran for 5, Locker, broken rib and all, bravely bolted up the middle for 14 more on two runs, to get the ball to the one with 1:29 left and a second and goal.

After Locker was stopped twice on quarterback sneaks for no gain, Polk scored the winning touchdown on fourth down from the one as the clock ran out. His mom gave Mr. IE a big hug after the game.

Before Polk's run, the Huskies huddled around coach Steve Sarkisian, who eschewed a field goal attempt that would have taken the two teams into overtime.

Locker said he would have been 'shocked' if Sarkisian had opted for the tying field goal, this per Bob Condotta of the Seattle Times.

"'I think every guy in the huddle expected him to call that and was ready for it and wasn't surprised by it,'" Locker was quoted as saying. "'It was the call that everyone wanted.'"

Sarkisian was quoted as saying that the last drive "was really a Jake Locker drive, with him running and throwing and all the things he was doing.'' Sark thinks Jake probably thought "I came back to do something special, that's to get to a bowl game, and here's another chance to get to that point.''

Overall, Jake completed 17 of 27 passes for 237 yards and 1 touchdown, with 1 interception -- which computes to a passing efficiency rating of 141.51, an amazing stat when you consider his broken rib, the spotty pass protection and the off-and-on again rain and hail.

His counterpart at Cal, Brock Mansion -- sounds like a corporate CEO out of a romance novel -- was 12 for 23 and 92 yards, with one interception, and a mediocre PE of 77.08.

Mimicking the Heinrich fumble, Locker, who was hit from behind, coughed the ball up to Cameron Jordan who took it to the house from 21 yards out, giving the Bears a 10-7 lead in the third quarter. Sixty years ago, Cal's Dick Groger raced Heinrich's fumble back to the Washington 15. Cal won the game 14-7 and went to the Rose Bowl.

Playing mostly sold defense, the Huskies held Cal to 283 yards, but gave up 191 yards on the ground, yielding 5.1 yards per running play.

The win keeps Washington's (5-6, 4-4) bowl hopes alive, while ending California's (5-7, 3-6) bid for bowl eligibility. The Huskies need to beat WSU (2-9, 1-7) in the Apple Cup next week to become bowl eligible and an almost most certain invitation.
 

Team 1 2 3 4 Total
Washington 0 0 10 6 16
California 0 3 7 3 13


Time Team How Player (s) Score
2nd qtr        
00:00 Cal FG Giorgio Tavecchio 53-yard kick. Cal, 3-0
3rd qtr        
10:22 UW TD Jake Locker 80-yard pass to D'Andre Goodin. Erik Folk kick. UW, 7-3
3:34 Cal TD Cameron Jordan 21-yard fumble recovery. Tavechhio kick. Cal, 10-7
00:08 UW FG Folk 37 yarder T, 10-10
4th qtr
10:53 Cal FG Tavecchio 47-yard boot. Cal, 13-10
0:00 UW TD Chris Polk 1-yard run. UW, 16-13

 

Statistics UW Cal
Total First Downs 16 14
  Rushing 7 11
  Passing 7 3
  Penalty 2 0
Total Net Yards 349 283
Net Yards Passing 237 92
Net Yards Rushing 112 191
Completions-att-int 17-27-1 12-23-1
Punts, yards, average 7-330, 7.1 8-343, 42.9
Sacks by (number, yards) 1-7 3-23
Kickoff Returns: number, yds, tds 3-96-0 3-70-0
Punt returns: number, yds, tds 4-13-0 2-8-0
Kickoff Yards 3-196 3-197
Net Yards per kickoff 42.0 33.7
Average yards per kickoff 65.3 65.7
Touchbacks (kickoffs) 0 0
Third-down conversions 4 of 14 4 of 14
Interception returns: no., yds, tds 1-8-0 1-0-0
Penalties, no., Yards 4-30 7-74
Fumbles; number/lost 2-2 1-0
Time of Possession  29:54 30:06

Passing cmp att yds tds int
Brock Mansion (77.08) 12 23 92 0 1
           
Washington          
Jake Locker (141.51) 17 27 237 1 1
           
Bears Rushing No. yds tds long  
Shane Vereen 23 106 0 19  
Keenan Allen 7 60 0 45  
Isi Sofele 4 13 0 11  
Brock Mansion 2 12 0 19  
           
Washington Rushing No. yds tds long
Jake Locker 12 11 0 11  
Chris Polk 18 86 1 19  
Jesse Callier 6 15 0 10  
           
Bears Pass Receiving No. yds tds long
Keenan Allen 4 46 0 22  
Michael Calvin 3 29 0 12  
Marvin Jones 2 17 0 9  
Will Kapp 1 6 0 6  
Isi Sofele 1 -2 0 0  
Shane Vereen 1 -4 0 0  
           
Washington Pass Rec. No. yds tds long
Devin Aguilar 2 7 0 9  
Jermaine Kearse 6 77 0 46  
D'Andre Goodwin 5 126 1 80  
Chris Polk 2 7 0 5  
Kevin Smith 1 18 0 18  
Austin Sylvester 1 2 0 2  
           
Punting        
Cal No. yds avg long IN20
Bryan Anger 8 343 42.9 56 2
           
Washington          
   
Kiel Rasp 6 300 50.0 80 1
Cody Bruns 1 30 30.0 30 0
Attendance: 44,613          

Richard Linde, aka Malamute can be reached at malamute@4malamute.com

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