King Borghi Adds Prophet to His Resume as WSU Pulls Epic Comeback!

Photo by William Mancebo/Getty Images

During the week before their big match-up against the Oregon State Beavers, Wazzu running back Max “King” Borghi predicted a win over the Beavers on Senior Day in the Palouse.  Little did Cougar Nation realize that it would come down to the final two seconds of the game.  Saturday night the King scored on a 2-yard touchdown run with 2 seconds to go as WSU pulled out a 54-53 victory over the Oregon State Beavers for their sixth win of the season!  In a game that went back and forth, WSU for once pulled the comeback and the victory to become bowl eligible!

Oregon State led at halftime by the score of 24-21 after a first half filled with turnovers (especially by the Cougars) and more big plays allowed by WSU’s defense, something that they are notorious of.  WSU felt blessed to only be down by three points as they went into the half.

Washington State took control of the football game in the 3rd quarter (they thought they were anyway) as they shut out the Beavers 14-0 to go up 35-24 in the football game.  The Cougars scored their points on touchdown passes to Calvin Jackson Jr. and Renard Bell, the latter touchdown pass breaking the Pac-12 record for touchdown passes in a season for Anthony “Air” Gordon.  Wazzu was liking their chances as they entered the fourth quarter up by 11 points.

Oregon State was finally having 2nd half success as they were driving down the field on the Cougars as the fourth quarter opened.  The Beavers ended their 75-yard drive by getting into the end-zone to cut the lead to 35-32.  There was a feeling in the air of the “UCLA collapse” earlier in the season.  Gordon quickly silenced the critics by leading his troops down for another score that finished with a Max Borghi run into the end-zone.  WSU went up 42-32 with just over 10 plus minutes left in the football game, plenty of time for something to still happen.  Oregon State quickly scored in just over two minutes. The Cougars, prone to giving up the big play, once again fell victim to their prey.  On the ensuing kickoff, Oregon State surprised the Cougars including the national audience by kicking it with an onside kick.  WSU fumbled it right back as Oregon State was back in business.  The nightmares from the UCLA game started swirling around Martin Stadium.  The momentum had changed quickly.  Forty-five seconds later, on another big play given up by the Cougar Defense, Oregon State had the lead of 46-42.  WSU had once again blown another football game late.

But it wasn’t over!  After OSU kicked it off to the Cougars, on the first play from scrimmage, Gordon threw his 3rd interception of the football game (WSU’s 5th turnover of the night).  Five plays later, the Beavers were in the end-zone.  With the score 53-42 and just over four minutes left, things were looking dim.  WSU was about to lose their 6th game of the year with the Apple Cup looming large the following Friday in Seattle.

Gordon took the ball at the 25-yard line and took his team 75-yards in 7 plays ending in a touchdown pass to Patmon, Gordon’s 6th touchdown pass of the night.  With just over two minutes and change, WSU cut the lead to 53-48 as the two-point conversion failed.  After a failed on-side kick effort by the Cougars, Oregon State took overlooking to close out the football game.  In everyone’s eyes, it looked like a victory for the Beavers.  The thing was, OSU failed to move the ball and on fourth down, instead of punting it or going for an extra long field goal, they attempted to pass the ball.  The pass went incomplete!!!  There was still a chance at this.

Gordon came out for one last effort to lead his team to victory.  Ten plays later (yes, a whopping 10 plays) in only sixty-eight seconds, King Borghi took a hand-off and ran it into the end-zone.  The King’s prediction had come true!  Wazzu had taken the lead 54-53.  There was a miracle happening on the Palouse as the half-empty stadium went berserk.  The Cougars kicked off with 2 seconds to go as the Beavers failed to return it for the score as the clock struck zero.  WSU had pulled off the miracle comeback, something Cougar Nation had not experienced in quite a long time.

Observations from the victory over Oregon State on Saturday night.

  • Anthony Gordon is good at his job. He makes lots of mistakes, but he bounces right back.  He finished the football game 50-70 for 606 yards and 6 touchdowns while throwing 3 interceptions.  Gordon never gave up, just like he hasn’t all season.  The 10-play drive in just over a minute was done in classic Hollywood fashion.  Whatever might happen over the final two ball games (which includes the bowl game), Gordon is the ultimate reason behind where we are at due to his leadership on and off the football field.  Thank you for a great season “Air” Gordon, one that will go down in history.  Congratulations on your Pac-12 record for touchdown passes in one single season.
  • King Borghi had another incredible football game even though his stats were below his “Borghi-sized” performances. He finished with 10 carries for 44 yards and 2 rushing touchdowns.  Max also caught 9 passes for 40 yards out of the backfield.  King finished off the football game, fulfilling his prophecy, by winning it for his beloved Cougars.
  • Our defense is horrible. We made the plays when we needed to, but too many big plays nearly killed our season.  U-DUB isn’t going to be so easy in the Apple Cup.  They can’t make anywhere near the same number of mistakes.
  • Jahad Woods is good! Ten more tackles to lead the team, including 1.5 tackles for a loss.  Thank you Jahad Woods for a great year.
  • Nine different receivers caught passes from Gordon. Star receiver Brandon Arconado went out early due to injury (but returned late in the game) as other receivers stepped it up in his absence.  Saturday night we perhaps saw a star in the making as back up running back Deon McIntosh caught 6 balls out of the backfield including a huge 41-yard catch and run late in the football game.

Friday November 29th at 1pm is the Cougars final regular season game of 2019.  Their opponent, the Washington Huskies, will be looking to increase their Apple Cup winning streak against the Cougars.   U-DUB is licking their chops after watching the game tapes of the Cougar’s defense (who isn’t to be honest?)  The Huskies and the Cougars both have a 6-5 record (rare for both teams to have low win totals) and are looking for bragging rights in the state of Washington after down years.  Wazzu has a chance against the stubborn defense of the University of Washington but every year we say that, and it ends up in disappointment.  Can Coach Leach finally win the big game?  Tune in on Black Friday on Fox at 1pm and find out.  Where will you be having your Apple Cup party?

Apple Cup Prediction:

Cougars 47 – Dawgs 41

Go Cougs!

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News Reporter
Brian joined the SSU in 2017 and covers the Everett AquaSox. I'm a graduate of Washington State University and I'm a die-hard baseball fan.