SEATTLE (AP) -- The last time Alexis Serna rose to college
football prominence was 14 months ago. The Oregon State kicker was
an image of pity on national cable television, standing in the
middle of LSU's rain-soaked Tiger Stadium with his head bowed
The freshman had just missed the third extra point of his
initial collegiate game, the last one in overtime, to allow the
defending national champion Tigers to escape with a win.
Saturday night on another rain-soaked field, this one
Washington's Husky Stadium, Serna's head was like his kicks: Up and
Serna made all six of his field goal attempts through horizontal
rain and gusty wind to tie a 21-year-old Pac-10 record and lead his
Beavers to a 18-10 victory over the fang-less Huskies.
"Those were great conditions. It was fun," beaming, soggy
Oregon State coach Mike Riley said after moving to within one win
of becoming eligible for a fourth consecutive bowl bid.
The Beavers (5-4, 3-3 Pac-10) next play Stanford at home, before
visiting Oregon Nov. 19.
Washington (1-8, 0-5) needs a win at Arizona or against
Washington State to avoid its second consecutive, one-victory
season. The Huskies have lost 14 consecutive conference games and
18 of their last 20 overall.
"It gets worse every week. It's just bad," said Washington
season-long starting quarterback Isaiah Stanback, whom coach Tyrone
Willingham replaced with sophomore transfer Johnny DuRocher to
begin the second half.
By then, Oregon State's Yvenson Bernard was on his way to 122
yards on 35 carries. That got Serna in position to tie the 1984
conference record UCLA's John Lee set against San Diego State. The
NCAA record for a single game is seven.
The six kicks -- from 46, 28, 18, 32, 41 and 25 yards -- made
Serna 11-for-11 in his last two games against Washington.
Serna, whom Riley called "a tough-minded kid," said he often
thinks of that errant night on the Bayou, and of how far he has
come since. He has made 38 of 43 field goals -- including 22 of 24
this season -- and all 57 of his extra-point tries since that LSU
"I always look back at that," Serna said. "I always tell
myself whatever happens, I can bounce back."
His teammates have learned the same thing.
"We're not impressed. He's been doing that since last year,"
Bernard said of Serna's six pack. "Whenever it's fourth and
whatever in the red zone, we go to him."
Riley said his offensive game plan changed once he saw how
difficult it would be for quarterback Matt Moore to throw downfield
in the weather. So the coach had Moore use safe, short passes to go
17-for-27 with 136 yards passing.
The Beavers loved that, compared to the six interceptions and
one lost fumble Moore produced in the previous week's loss to
Arizona, the low point of this wavy Oregon State season.
Meanwhile, Oregon State's defense exploited Washington's
ineffectiveness and uncertainty with its quarterbacks. The Huskies'
anemic output -- buoyed by a touchdown in the game's final minute --
came against a Beavers defense that earlier had allowed Louisville
63 points, UCLA 51 and Arizona State 42. Both teams entered the
game with the worst defenses in the Pac-10, allowing an average of
34.9 points per game.
Willingham, in his first season at Washington, made good on
hints earlier this week and benched Stanback after he completed 5
of 12 passes for 104 yards. He also lost a fumble while getting
drilled by unblocked Oregon State linebacker Keith Ellison, whom
Stanback said he never saw. That doomed the Huskies' deepest
first-half drive, to the Beavers 9.
"I feel like I was doing OK," Stanback said. "(But) you've
got to expect that. When things aren't going well with the team,
people are going to look at the quarterback.
"If you can't handle that, you shouldn't be playing the
DuRocher was 11-for-30 with 103 yards passing, one interception
and one lost fumble. He did throw a 5-yard touchdown pass to Chris
Chambers with 48 seconds left.
Willingham said he didn't know who would start next Saturday at
Arizona, adding "you guys need more to write about that that."
Stanback said he doesn't know, either. But DuRocher said he
expects to be back on the sidelines.
"As far as I know, Isaiah is the starter."
South Carolina AD Ray Tanner is not "100 percent sure" Saturday's game vs. No. 7 LSU will be played at Williams-Brice Stadium because of devastating floods that hit the state.
UCLA junior linebacker Myles Jack has withdrawn from school and will enter the NFL draft, making the decision just weeks after suffering a season-ending knee injury.
A judge has lifted a temporary restraining order filed against Rutgers wide receiver Leonte Carroo after a woman he was accused of attacking said she didn't think it was necessary.
Auburn senior receiver D'haquille Williams has been dismissed from the team.
Alabama coach Nick Saban took exception with the media's outlook on his team prior to Saturday's win at Georgia, lashing out at those who "buried" the Crimson Tide.
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