CORVALLIS -- They always say it's easier to write about a loss than a victory. Well this is…
A mixed bag for Beavs in first half
Oregon has dominated in rushing yards, with the first man there for the Beavers far too often failing to wrap up.
And no statistic tells the tale better than this one: Kenjon Barner had 142 rushing yards in the first half alone, UO with 250 total rushing yards. (Barner left the game late in the first half, possibly with bruised ribs.)
Oregon QB Marcus Mariota wasn't all that accurate in the first half, but he was Houdini out there, somehow getting out of two sure Beaver sacks along with racing for two long gains. The latter sack that wasn't to be was a killer -- Scott Crichton had him in his grasp but Mariota escaped, converting a fourth and seven. And that led the Ducks to their second score and the lead, 13-7.
OSU found something on offense, with Storm Woods and Terron Ward exploiting running lanes, and Sean Mannion finding the soft spots in the middle zone. But an uncharacteristic drop by Markus Wheaton allowed the Ducks to take over on downs on a critical drive in the second quarter.
Instead of Oregon State moving the chains and continuing on for a touchdown and taking back the lead, UO took over around their own 30-yard line and motored down the field to take a 20-7 advantage.
The Beavs needed to answer and Ward set it up, taking the kickoff out to the 45-yard line. But a mistake by Mannion on a well covered Wheaton was picked at the Ducks' five yard line. After OSU got the ball back, they made good. Inside Duck territory, a critical 14-yard gain on fourth and seven moved the chains. But the Beavs played conservatively, for the field goal, and let the clock wind down, with the make on the final play of the first half.
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