Poyer leads OSU's defense in victory
October, 6, 2012
By Kevin Gemmell | ESPN.com
The Oregon State Beavers overcame an uncharacteristically inefficient first half on offense, but pulled away from Washington State in the second half en route to a 19-6 home win.
Luckily for No. 14 Oregon State (4-0, 3-0), Washington State's offense didn't look much better.
The teams combined for eight turnovers -- including three interceptions by Washington State quarterback Connor Halliday, who was eventually replaced by Jeff Tuel. Oregon State quarterback Sean Mannion also had a three-interception day.
Considering the big numbers both of these teams were capable of, the outcome is a bit of a surprise.
Oregon State cornerback Jordan Poyer hauled in three interceptions for the Beaver defense, which held Washington State (2-4, 0-3) to 227 total yards of offense and no touchdowns.
The Beavers held a 6-3 advantage at halftime following a pair of Trevor Romaine field goals and one from WSU's Andrew Furney.
But they found the end zone in the third quarter when Mannion (25-of-42, 270 yards) connected with Markus Wheaton on a 12-yard score in the corner of the end zone.
"Wipe that slate clean, we have a brand new second half," Mannion told the Pac-12 Network after the game. "...That's great about our whole offense. We realize we're going to have some good plays and some bad plays. You have to play with a short memory."
Washington State, while struggling offensively, appeared to take another step forward as a defense. safety Deone Bucannon, defensive tackle Ioane Gauta and Casey Locker all had interceptions for the Cougars. Linebacker Travis Long also played well with a sack, three tackles and a pass breakup.
But the Cougars, who rushed for just 20 yards, couldn't get much going offensively. Halliday was 9-of-20 for 81 yards with the three picks before Tuel replaced him. Tuel went 11-of-17 for 126 yards and an interception.
Despite the shaky performance, Mannion was 5-of-7 for 64 yards on OSU's second to last drive of the game, a 12-play march that spanned 86 yards and was capped with a Tyler Anderson 1-yard touchdown run.