BYU Struggles To Find Rhythm In 35-7 Loss To Washington

Oct 2, 2018, 7:07 PM | Updated: 7:09 pm
Washington Huskies quarterback Jake Browning (3) scores against the Brigham Young Cougars in Seattl...
Washington Huskies quarterback Jake Browning (3) scores against the Brigham Young Cougars in Seattle on Saturday, Sept. 29, 2018. (Photo courtesy Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News)
(Photo courtesy Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News)

SEATTLE, Wash. – No. 20 BYU played their third Pac-12 team in five games as they faced No. 11 Washington in Seattle. The Cougars couldn’t get anything going on offense, scoring their only touchdown with 41 seconds left in the game. They fell to the Huskies 35-7 in an uninspiring performance.

BYU quarterback Tanner Mangum started the game completing his first 8 passes, on his way to 160 yards on 18-of-21 passing. The running game didn’t show up, racking up only 34 yards.

Huskies quarterback Jake Browning completed his first 11 passes before his first incompletion. He went 23-of-25 for 277 yards and one touchdown through the air and added another touchdown on the ground.

BYU was unable to stop Washington’s running attack. Huskies running back Myles Gaskin compiled 81 yards and one touchdown, and tailback Salvon Ahmed carried the ball 10 times for 86 yards and two touchdowns.

Washington’s Offense Too Much For BYU

In the first half, the Huskies scored three touchdowns on their first five drives to lead the Cougars 21-0. Washington took charge of the game on a fumble just before halftime, when BYU was trying to drain the clock. Running back Lopini Katoa coughed up the ball with 22 seconds left in the first half. The Huskies easily converted the Cougar miscue, as Browning ran in the touchdown from nine yards out with five seconds left.

BYU head coach Kalani Sitake wasn’t pleased with the lapse of execution late in the first half.

“That was frustrating to have the turnover. We were trying to run the clock out and go in (to the locker room) to try and recover,” he said. “It doesn’t help going down another seven points.”

Washington converted two more touchdowns on their three drives in the second half. BYU punted three times and fumbled the ball a second time before scoring their only touchdown late in the game.

Where Was BYU’s Running Game?

Averaging 156.5 rushing yards per game going into Seattle, BYU couldn’t get anything going in the run game. Katoa and running back mate Squally Canada combined for 40 yards on 15 carries. Washington had eight tackles for loss, bringing the rushing yard total to just 34 yards.

The last time BYU rushed for less than 35 yards was in 2017 when they tallied 29 yards on the ground against Mississippi State.

Brigham Young Cougars running back Squally Canada (22) leaves the game and walks to the locker room after an injury against the Washington Huskies in Seattle on Saturday, Sept. 29, 2018. Washington won 35-7. (Photo courtesy Jeffrey D. Allred/ Deseret News)

Sitake gave a lot of credit to Washington.

“As a team, we made way too many mistakes to even have a chance in this game. Washington is a great team. They got everything rolling and we were on our heels the entire game,” he said.

Moroni Laulu-Pututau Done For The Season

After getting injured on the first drive, tight end Moroni Laulu-Pututau announced on Twitter that he has torn his ACL and will require surgery. He will miss the remainder of the season.

The junior from Hyrum, Utah missed the 2017 season after suffering a Lisfranc injury before the season. Before his injury, he caught 14 passes for 120 yards and one touchdown this season.

BYU fell to 3-1 on the season and dropped out of the AP Top 25 poll. They will have a quick turnaround at home taking on in-state rival Utah State on Friday at LaVell Edwards Stadium in Provo.

“We can’t let this loss affect next week’s game,” Sitake said.

The Cougars next face a short week, hosting Utah State at LaVell Edwards Stadium in Provo, Friday at 7 p.m. The winner takes home the Wagon Wheel. The game will be broadcast on ESPN2.

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BYU Struggles To Find Rhythm In 35-7 Loss To Washington