Halftime: Defense ensures the Price is wrong

SEATTLE – Despite the size and the noise in Husky Stadium, the Cougars made their message loud and clear in the first half of the Apple Cup: They mean business. Sheer determination to make it to their first bowl in a decade resulted in a poised Connor Halliday and a defense that relentlessly pressured Husky quarterback Keith Price, forcing two turnovers as they took a 10-3 lead into halftime.

Despite playing in front of a packed house of predominantly their own fans, Washington's offense was clearly rattled by their visitors from the Palouse. On third-and-5 on the Huskies' opening drive at the WSU 35, Price was sacked for a 6-yard loss by sophomore Darryl Paulo that forced a 48-yard field goal by Travis Coons.

On their ensuing possession, sophomore Darryl Monroe stopped Bishop Sankey for a loss on third-and-1 at their own 37 that forced Washington to punt.

Price was able to break free as a flag hit the turf for holding, but he was drilled by sophomore defensive lineman Xavier Cooper and fumbled the ball. Senior linebacker Justin Sagote recovered at the Huskies' 47.

Senior Andrew Furney tied the game 3-all when he drilled a 49-yard field goal with 13:38 left in the half.

The Huskies took over around midfield and were driving when senior Nolan Washington intercepted Price and stepped out of bounds at the WSU 9 with 10:10 left in the half.

Rickey Galvin hauled a 15-yard pass into left corner of the end zone with 4:27 left. WSU converted a pair of third-and-1 plays on the drive; the first came from its own 18 on a 2-yard run by junior Marcus Mason, and the latter, from the Huskies' 16 on a 1-yard scramble by Halliday. The Cougars' longest play from scrimmage was a 20-yard carry by sophomore Teondray Caldwell from their own 45.

Halliday finished the half with 17-of-33 passing for 139 yards, while Price completed 5 of 8 for 72 yards.

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