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Monday, April 27, 2009
Banged up defense leads Washington State

By ESPN.com staff
ESPN.com

Posted by ESPN.com's Ted Miller

Despite having just 22 healthy players on defense, that side of the ball controlled Washington State's spring game. The offense managed just 231 total yards, including 69 yards rushing on 22 carries.

After gaining 189 yards on 25 carries in the first scrimmage, the running game fell silent in the final two, totalling 121 on 40 carries (3.0 yards per tote).

The key for the Cougars heading into the offseason? Getting healthy. A significant number of starters on both sides of the ball were on the sidelines for all or much of the spring.

Sophomore Logwone Mitz, who's competing for carries with Dwight Tardy and James Montgomery, led WSU running backs with 34 yards on six carries, including the longest rush of the day, a 21-yard gain.

With quarterback Marshall Lobbestael, the front-runner to start next fall, sitting out because he's still rehabilitating an injured knee, senior Kevin Lopina and sophomore Dan Wagner mostly relied on short passes. Wagner's 38-yard touchdown pass to tight end Andrei Lintz was the biggest play of the day and the only score.

Senior defensive end Kevin Kooyman and junior defensive end Casey Hamlett each recorded sacks for the Cougars, and sophomore Aire Justin had an interception.