In a game that was not a surprise as a defensive struggle both the Oregon State Beavers andtraded blows and leads at key times, but in the end OSU came up short. It was a game of two halves. The Beavs scored 23 straight points after going down 14 to 0 and controlled much of the 2nd and 3rd quarters, but in the end it was Stanford's control of the 1st and end of the 4th quarters that was the difference.
Both teams showed why their defenses have been the difference this season with the Beavs forcing four turnovers and Stanford forcing a huge one near the end of the game that ended up being the decisive moment in the game.
Cody Vaz got off to a slow start then began to find some rhythm but seemed to lose his touch and confidence as the game went down to the wire. Vaz went 24 for 39 for 234 yards, but again the difference came down to Vaz's fumble while scrambling about midway through the 4th quarter. Sean Mannion came in on the last Beavs offensive play of the game and actually made a throw on 4th down with 15 to go that just came up short of being a big time catch.
Storm Woods had a solid game against the top ranked rush defense team with 85 yards on 16 carries, and Terron Ward had 12 yards on only four carries but one key TD. Marcus Wheaton had another 100 yard game with 104, but Brandin Cooks seemed to be a bit underutilized again with only 75 yards on seven catches.
Alas though coming up short is the theme of this game as the Beavs could not fully capitalize on some excellent drives and Stanford turnovers and settled for three FGs. Additionally the Beavs had Kevin Hogan inches away from being down for a key sack that instead went for a end of the 3rd quarter 40 yard TD play. And in the end the Beavs could not get the right plays called or executed on 3rd down going 3 for 13 in this category.
Unfortunately this may well be the theme of the season as we begin the final stretch to end it. The Beavs were on the verge of possibly one of their best ever seasons and have now come up just short in their two losses to place them just under the current BCS blow berth bubble. Of course to be able to even say this after the last season's performance is in of itself an amazing thing, but there are now some "what ifs" once again hanging over the program as it moves towards its final three regular season games. There are still possibilities to be had, but time is running short now and this team will have to dig deep and bounce back with a vengeance.