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Courtesy: Washington State Athletics
Defensive Line, Darling Dominate Scrimmage
Courtesy: Washington State Athletics
Release: 04/13/2002
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April 13, 2002

PULLMAN, Wash. --- Washington State used six different quarterbacks during its second scrimmage of the spring Saturday, but none of them could escape the pressure applied by the Cougar defensive front four.

Defensive ends Fred Shavies, D.D. Acholonu, and Isaac Brown combined for five sacks, including two each by Shavies and Acholonu. Tackles Rien Long and Jeremey Williams also got in on the sack attack, recording one a piece. The Cougar defensive front was bolstered by the return of senior Tomasi Kongaika, who has spent the last eight months recovering from injuries.

"He bulled guys over a couple times when he was in there, so it is great to have him back," Price said of Kongaika. "This was the big test day for him."

Offensively, junior running back Jermaine Green and sophomore wide receiver Devard Darling were the big stories. Green, a transfer from Butler County Junior College in Kansas, rushed 10 times for 78 yards and caught one pass for a 60-yard touchdown, displaying his speed for the Mom's Weekend crowd.

"It's nice to throw a six-yard pass and get 60 yards on it," Price said. "Gesser likes that. Anytime Jermaine touches the ball, he has a chance. He is such a tough runner. He is strong, he doesn't fumble and he has good hands."

Darling caught four passes for 103 yards, including a three-yard touchdown strike from Matt Kegel.

"He is going to be a really good player because he practices really hard," Price said of Darling. "He studies tape and he works hard. He can't help but be good because he works so hard. He is going to get better every practice, because he never takes a day off."

Senior quarterback Jason Gesser led the scrimmage with 164 passing yards on five of 11 attempts. Junior Matt Kegel hit on nine of 15 passes for 101 yards, while Chris Hurd, Josh Swogger, Dayton Dennison, and Dan St. Mary combined for 66 yards and five completions.

"I was pleased again with the performance of the quarterbacks, and I was actually pleased with the whole scrimmage," Price said.

On the ground, senior John Tippins complimented Green's big day by rushing five times for 55 yards. Freshman Jevon Miller carried seven times for 22 yards and was the only other running back to see significant action.

With senior wide receivers Mike Bush and Jerome Riley sitting out of Saturday's scrimmage, Darling and sophomore Trandon Harvey were the go-to targets for Cougar quarterbacks. Harvey added four catches and 53 yards to Darling's total, while Curtis Nettles hauled in two passes for 27 yards and a touchdown.

The morning's biggest highlight was provided by All-Pac-10 kicker Drew Dunning, who wanted to close the scrimmage with a 60-yard field goal. After missing on two attempts from that distance, Dunning pleaded for another opportunity, which he blasted through the uprights, gathering a loud ovation from the crowd of about 300 onlookers. Dunning connected on nine of 12 field goal attempts, missing from only 52 yards and 60 twice. The Issaquah native converted two 47-yard attempts, and another from 55.

The Cougars will have their final tune-up for the April 27 Crimson & Gray game 10 a.m. next Saturday at Martin Stadium.


Passing: Gesser 11/5/0/164/1/60, Kegel 15/9/0/101/1/39, Hurd 3/0/0/0/0/0, Swogger 3/2/0/22/0/11, Dennison 2/1/0/6/0/6, St. Mary 4/2/0/38/0/30

Rushing: Green 10/78, Tippins 5/55, Miller 7/22, Bolton 2/14, Dennison 1/4, Hawkins 2/2

Receiving: Darling 4/103/54, Harvey 4/53/24, Green 1/60/60, Hansell 2/36/30, Halpin 3/30/11, Nettles 2/27/18, Bienemann 2/10/7, Anderson 1/2/2

Sacks: Acholonu 2/-14, Shavies 2/-12, Long 1/-10, Brown 1/-9, Williams 1/-2

Scoring Summary Dunning 36-yard field goal, Green 60-yard run, Nettles 9-yard pass from Gesser, Darling 3-yard pass from Kegel

Washington State Cougars Athletics