Honor The Past: 2001 Wells Fargo Sun Bowl
Dec. 31, 2012
EL PASO, Texas - Washington State used a fast start in the first half and solid defensive performance in the second half to defeat Purdue 33-27 in the Wells Fargo Sun Bowl.
The No. 13 Cougars jumped out to a 7-0 lead with 1:50 gone in the first quarter when Jason David picked off a Kyle Orton pass on the Boilermakers' third play from scrimmage and raced 45 yards for a touchdown. It was the first of five Purdue turnovers in the game and the first of two picks by David.
Later in the first quarter, Jason Gesser found Mike Bush for a 46-yard touchdown pass to extend Washington State's lead to 14-0.
In the second quarter, the Boilermakers responded with 20 points while holding the Cougars to a 47-yard field goal by Drew Dunning to enter the locker room with a 20-17 advantage.
On the initial drive of the second half, Lamont Thompson intercepted Orton to set the Cougars up at the Boilermakers' 28.
Washington State capitalized on the turnover when Dunning's field goal attempt was good from 34 yards to tie the game 20-20 with 13:23 left in the third quarter.
After Purdue was forced to punt on its next two possessions, Washington State took over on its 49-yard line. Gesser completed a pass to Dave Minnich for 11 yards and another to Jerome Riley for 31 yards to give the Cougars first-and-goal at the Boilermakers' 9.
Minnich carried to the 4 and a pair of Gesser runs capped the drive with his scoring coming from 1-yard out to put Washington State on top 27-20.
The Cougars' defense forced another three-and-out and Washington State drove into the red zone again on its ensuing possession. Dunning increased the Cougars' lead to 30-20 with a 30-yard field goal.
With 10:25 left in the game, Thompson intercepted Orton in the Cougars' end zone to deny Purdue. The play help Thompson capture the game's MVP award as the safety added 10 tackles and five passes defended to his two-interception day.
A 37-yard field by Dunning with 7:37 remaining pushed the Cougars' lead to 33-20 before the Boilermakers pulled within 33-27 on a touchdown with 1:53 to play.
Purdue recovered an onside kick and had the ball at its 49. Two Orton completions moved the ball to the Washington State 22, but the Cougar defense forced three-straight incompletions to seal the victory.
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