April 26, 2003
PULLMAN, Wash. --- Quarterback Matt Kegel completed 16 of 25 passes for 273 yards and three touchdowns to lead the Crimson squad to a 36-3 victory in Washington State's annual Crimson and Gray Game at Martin Stadium Saturday.
Despite Kegel's big day, it was the Crimson defense that set the tone early. Senior cornerback Jason David forced a fumble on Gray's first play from scrimmage, which eventually wound up in the hands of linebacker Al Genatone, who took it 18 yards for a touchdown to make the score 7-0.
"The first play, I had to take the place of Erik Coleman (recovering from shoulder surgery) as the voice of the defense and as the hitter. I'm turning into a hitter this year," David said of his forced fumble. "The defense came a long way this spring. Today sealed the deal because everybody came together and we really played as a unit."
Kegel connected with fellow senior Sammy Moore for a 43-yard touchdown on Crimson's first offensive play to extend the first quarter lead to 14-0. The Havre, Mont., native's second and third scoring strikes did not come until the fourth quarter, when he hooked up with Moore again for a 40-yard touchdown, and Devard Darling on a 35-yard streak to the end zone. Moore was cited for excessive celebration after his second trip past the goal line.
"I was just trying to do what Jason David does," Moore said. "He gets a chance to celebrate in the end zone every practice, so I was like, 'Man, I have to try and do that in the spring game.' It was just something I did just for fun. It isn't something that I would do in a real game."
WSU Head Coach Bill Doba liked the play of his second-year receiver, but wasn't as excited about Moore's post-touchdown antics.
"Sammy has had a good spring. He is a good punt returner and he is catching the ball. We just have to slow down the celebrations," Doba said. "He promised me he wouldn't do that in a game. It was just practice and he was having a little fun. You have to have a little fun out there."
Darling finished the day with seven catches for 107 yards. The junior wide receiver was optimistic about the 2003 season after seeing everything come together Saturday.
"It is very important for Matt and I to be on the same page," Darling said. "We are looking to do big things and Matt is looking more comfortable out there every weekend and every practice. I think he is going to get the job done and we are going to have a pretty good team."
On the ground, running backs Jermaine Green and Jonathan Smith combined for 33 yards on 12 carries. Both players were also used as weapons catching the ball out of the backfield, as Smith lead the way with two receptions and 17 yards.
Gray quarterback Josh Swogger was under constant pressure from the Crimson defense, made up of first-string players and key reserves, throughout the afternoon. The Youngstown, Ohio, native completed six of 19 passes for 36 yards. He completed an additional pass for three yards while running the Crimson offense for one series.
Tight end Jesse Taylor was the primary target for Swogger and the Gray squad. The freshman brought in two passes for 41 yards.
Gray struggled to move the ball and put points on the board against the Crimson defense, which featured seven returning starters from the 2002 Pac-10 Championship team, but managed to keep the contest close until the final stanza.
"When it is that close and that competitive, I think we showed today that we have pretty good depth," Doba said.
Freshmen Mkristo Bruce and Scott Davis had breakout performances for the Gray squad. Bruce, a 6-6, 235-pound defensive end, recorded three tackles, including a sack, and had one pass deflection.
"Mkristo Bruce is going to be a real good football player. He has great enthusiasm and he loves the game. He was a high school quarterback. He and (Cougar defensive tackle) Odell Howard were high school quarterbacks that are playing on the defensive line for us. Now we aren't going to do that with all high school quarterbacks," Doba joked.
Davis, a linebacker from Kamiakin High School in Kennewick, was also a disruptive force, tallying four tackles, including a tackle for loss, and recovering a fumble.
The Crimson team received solid play from linebacker Will Derting, who turned in a game-high five tackles, including one behind the line. Virgil Williams, Hamza Abdullah, and Genatone all had one tackle for loss.
After the game, Doba had nothing but praise for his team and their work throughout the month of April.
"These guys have been great. They have had great attitudes and they have really worked hard all spring," Doba said. "We won. We are still undefeated. I knew we were going to win this one."
Washington State opens the 2003 season Aug. 30 against Idaho at Seattle's Seahawk Stadium.
Josh Swogger (6-19/36/0)
7-0 CRIMSON - 18-yard fumble return by Al Genatone (Dunning kick good)
14-0 CRIMSON - 43-yard pass to Sammy Moore from Matt Kegel (Dunning kick good)
16-0 CRIMSON - Ball snapped over punter's head for safety
16-3 GRAY - Alex Oyer 27-yard field goal
22-3 CRIMSON - 2-yard run by Jermaine Green
29-3 CRIMSON - 40-yard pass to Sammy Moore from Matt Kegel (Dunning kick good)
36-3 CRIMSON - 35-yard pass to Devard Darling from Matt Kegel (Dunning kick good)
Billy Knotts - broken thumb, will have surgery; recovery 4-6 weeks in a cast.
Al Genatone - concussion and will be evaluated next week.
Adam West - MCL knee sprain; 2-4 week recovery.
Chris Hurd - had MRI today; being evaluated; will know Monday results of MRI.
WSU FIRST ROUND DRAFT PICK NOTES
Marcus Trufant became the 11th Washington State player to be picked in the first round of the NFL Draft Saturday. He is the second-highest, non-quarterback to be selected, as defensive back Clancy Williams was taken ninth by Los Angeles in 1964.
2003 - Marcus Trufant, CB, by Seattle (1/11)*2003
1998 - Ryan Leaf, QB, by San Diego (1/2)
1995 - Mark Fields, LB, by New Orleans (1/13)
1993 - Drew Bledsoe, QB, by New England (1/1)
1990 - Steve Broussard, RB, by Atlanta (1/20)
1988 - Timm Rosenbach, QB, by Phoenix (1/2, supplemental draft)
1984 - Keith Millard, DT, by Minnesota (1/13)
1979 - Jack Thompson, QB, by Cincinnati (1/3)
1978 - Ken Greene, DB, by St. Louis (1/19)
1964 - Clancy Williams, DB, Los Angeles (1/9)
1937 - Ed Goddard, QB, by Brooklyn Dodgers (1/2)