by Judah Newby
CORVALLIS, Ore. –
Judah’s Players of the Game:
Spencer Sanders – QB – OKST
19-for-24, 203 yds, 3 TD; 13 rush, 109 yards
Tylan Wallace – WR – OKST
5 catches, 92 yards, 2 TD
Isaiah Hodgins – WR – ORST
9 catches, 170 yards, 2 TD
Mike Gundy has a really good quarterback on his hands. Redshirt freshman Spencer Sanders started the season-opener for Oklahoma State and passed, ran, and executed the Cowboys offense all over the helpless Oregon State defense to the tune of a 52-36 final score.
We didn’t know until game time if Gundy would go with Sanders or his transfer upper classman Dru Brown from Hawaii. Turns out, Sanders was the man for the job. He led Oklahoma State to go 10-for-13 on 3rd down, and at one point in the fourth quarter had orchestrated scoring drives on all but one of the Cowboys 8 true offensive possessions (6 TD, FG, Punt). He finished the game going 19-for-24 for 203 yards and 3 touchdowns, and added 13 carries for 109 yards on the ground.
Oregon State’s defense…well, let’s just say it has some work to do. That theme carries over from last year to this one. The Beavers allowed 555 yards of offense to the Cowboys and, as mentioned above, could not get off the field on third down. Senior safety Shawn Wilson led the Beavs in tackles with twelve. Cowboys returning 1st-Team All-Big 12 wide receiver and Biletnikoff Award finalist Tylan Wallace had two dynamic touchdowns and finished with 5 catches for 92 yards and 2 touchdowns, including scoring strikes of 36 and 21 yards in the Cowboys 24-point second quarter. Expect Wallace to be making a bunch of plays on Sundays.
But on what was otherwise a disappointing night for Oregon State, a bright spot was wide out Isaiah Hodgins. The junior hauled in a 29-yard touchdown pass feathered in by Jake Luton on the first drive of the game that made it 7-0 Beavers, then added another score of 9 yards in the second half. Hodgins finished with 9 catches for 170 yards and 2 touchdowns. Hopefully he won’t get too frustrated producing for a team that continues to struggle. He’s also too good a player not to get noticed by the NFL.
Luton finished 23-for-42 for 251 yards and 3 touchdowns and did not throw an interception. Tristan Gebbia led a touchdown drive late in the fourth quarter in relief of Luton.
The second quarter turned this ballgame around. Oregon State led 10-7 after the first quarter, then caught a break when an appearent touchdown catch by Wallace in the back of the end zone was reviewed and overturned due to Wallace being airborne and then out of bounds when completing the catch. That drive resulted in an Oklahoma State field goal that made it 10-10 with 13:33 left in the first half.
After that point, it was all Cowboys, highlighted by the two touchdowns from Sanders to Wallace, with a 5-yard touchdown run by LD Brown smashed in for good measure. The Cowboys scored 24 points in the period, and a late first half touchdown connection from Luton to Tyjon Lindsey could only bring the Beavers to within 31-16 at the break.
Oklahoma State kept the pedal to the medal with a touchdown drive to open the second half. The Beavers scored to make it a 16-point game on a pair of fourth quarter occasions but got no closer.
Oregon State did not cover the 14-point spread, and the point total of 74 was over by early in the fourth quarter.
The Beavers (0-1) visit the Hawaii Rainbow Warriors (1-0) in Week Two action next Saturday night in Honolulu.