3:30 PM ET, November 18, 2006
Stanford Stadium, STANFORD, CA
STANFORD, Calif. (AP) -- Matt Moore reminded himself to play with poise and execute Oregon State's offense the way he knows how: with simplicity.
This time, the Beavers didn't let Stanford put a damper on their postseason hopes.
Moore threw for 176 yards and two touchdowns and ran for a 1-yard score to make Oregon State bowl eligible with a 30-7 victory Saturday, spoiling the Cardinal's final shot at winning a game in its fancy renovated stadium.
"It's big time," Moore said. "We're not done, though. It's nice to know the whole bowl situation is in place and taken care of. ... I just went back to the basics."
Yvenson Bernard carried 36 times for 168 yards -- 20 of those rushes for 99 yards in the first half alone -- to go over the 1,000-yard mark for the season. Alexis Serna kicked field goals of 29, 31 and 18 yards for Oregon State (7-4, 5-3 Pac-10), whose loss to Stanford a year ago helped ruin the Beavers' bowl chances and snapped their four-game winning streak in the series.
The Beavers will head into the Civil War game against archrival Oregon on Friday night at Corvallis to play for a possible bid to the Sun Bowl. The Beavers will finish with a winning conference record for the third time in school history.
"I'm real excited about it," coach Mike Riley said. "I think this team has risen from the ashes from whatever our record was early and getting beat badly a couple of times to going to a bowl game and right now maybe being third in the Pac-10. So I'm really proud of them."
Normally, six wins would make a team bowl eligible but the Beavers have a 13-game schedule. Oregon State upset then-No. 3 Southern California 33-31 on Oct. 28 for one of those victories.
Getting past Stanford was the first test.
"We know anything can happen," strong safety Sabby Piscitelli said. "We don't overlook nobody. We expected to go to a big bowl this year. It's a good feeling."
Sammie Stroughter and Brandon Powers each caught touchdown passes from Moore and Oregon State's blitzing defense made things tough for Stanford quarterback T.C. Ostrander, sacked five times -- all in the second half. Ostrander also was picked off in the end zone by Coye Francies early in the fourth quarter.
Anthony Kimble ran into several blockers before finding an opening to the right and going 36 yards for a touchdown on Stanford's second offensive play 3:21 into the game that put the Cardinal on the board first.
But Oregon State tied it 2½ minutes later on Moore's 28-yard TD pass to Stroughter and Moore hit Powers on a 15-yard strike 11 seconds into the second quarter -- one of six catches by Powers. Moore has the longest active streak in the nation for passes without an interception at 117.
Kimble's TD marked the first time all season Stanford has scored first.
Kimble, Trevor Hooper and Brandon Harrison all sat in silence afterward in Stanford's subdued locker room. The Cardinal couldn't win in the final home game for 18 seniors who were honored beforehand.
Stanford (1-10, 1-7), which shocked Washington last weekend at Husky Stadium in Seattle for its first victory to snap an 11-game skid, was trying to salvage one victory in its sparkling new stadium that underwent a $90 million facelift during the offseason.
"It's hard for the senior class to go out like this," said Kimble, a junior. "Every year I've been here, the seniors have gone out with a down feeling. It's hard not to win a game at home for our fans -- a brand new stadium and we can't get a win in it."
Stanford freshman Richard Sherman caught five passes for 90 yards. The Cardinal now have two weeks before playing rival California in the Big Game in Berkeley to end a most disappointing season under second-year coach Walt Harris, which has raised questions about his job security with new athletic director Bob Bowlsby.
"It's real difficult," Harris said of going 0-5 in Stanford Stadium. "It's as difficult as anything I have ever personally had to experience and I'm sure for our players it's the same way in the area of football. We have a lot of work to do and we are committed to getting it right."
Oregon State receiver Chris Johnson helped move the Beavers into scoring position late in the first half with a one-handed, 10-yard catch that he hauled in with his left hand while falling over under pressure from Stanford cornerback Nick Sanchez.
Two plays later, Michael Okwo appeared to intercept a pass from Moore but a review of the play showed he didn't keep two feet in bounds and Oregon State got a 31-yard field goal from Serna.
Stanford's infamous band, on probation after getting into trouble with the school for allegedly vandalizing its former practice facility, was allowed on the field for the first time all season. No charges will be filed after an investigation failed to find sufficient evidence. The group has been barred from playing at Notre Dame and Oregon in previous years because of behavior and offensive content in its halftime show.
Team Stat Comparison
|3rd Down Conversions||4-13||2-9|
|4th Down Conversions||2-2||1-2|
|TD||11:39||ANTHONY KIMBLE 36 YD RUN (AARON ZAGORY KICK)|
Drive info: 2 plays, 45 yards.
|TD||9:09||SAMMIE STROUGHTER 28 YD PASS FROM MATT MOORE (ALEXIS SERNA KICK)|
Drive info: 6 plays, 63 yards.
|TD||14:49||BRANDON POWERS 15 YD PASS FROM MATT MOORE (ALEXIS SERNA KICK)|
Drive info: 11 plays, 85 yards.
|FG||5:19||ALEXIS SERNA 29 YD FG|
Drive info: 13 plays, 69 yards.
|FG||0:21||ALEXIS SERNA 31 YD FG|
Drive info: 11 plays, 43 yards.
|FG||1:20||ALEXIS SERNA 18 YD FG|
Drive info: 11 plays, 53 yards.
|TD||5:04||MATT MOORE 1 YD RUN (ALEXIS SERNA KICK)|
Drive info: 4 plays, 6 yards.