Oct 14, 2001
By LANDON HALL
AP Sports Writer
CORVALLIS, Ore. - Ken Simonton ran for 104 yards to end his slump, and Oregon State's defense regained some of last year's punch to rout Arizona 38-3 Saturday night.
Simonton, held to 45 yards rushing in losses to UCLA and Washington State, had a 1-yard touchdown run to become the Pac-10's career scoring leader among non-kickers and keep the Beavers (2-3, 1-2 Pac-10) in contention for an unprecedented third straight bowl appearance.
For the third straight game, Arizona (3-3, 0-3) gave first-year coach John Mackovic a feeble performance. The offense managed just 159 total yards and 46 rushing.
The defense was nearly as bad, giving up 415 yards, although injuries to the front seven are a big reason. The Wildcats, who entered the game ranked 103rd in the nation in points allowed at 34.2, have given up 149 points over their last three games.
The defeat was Arizona's most lopsided since a 56-14 loss to Arizona State to end the 1996 season, and it could have been worse. If not for a 28-yard field goal by Sean Keel late in the third quarter, set up by Oregon State backup quarterback Derek Anderson's interception, Arizona would have been shut out for the first time since 1991.
Oregon State improved to 5-19-1 in the series by beating Arizona for the third straight time, as with last year's 33-9 win in Tucson, the Wildcats failed to score a touchdown, the only two times that has happened to them since 1994.
Oregon State's Jonathan Smith had been last in the Pac-10 in passing efficiency, but part of his problem was an inexperienced offensive line. The Beavers' solution was putting in a shotgun formation, and Smith completed 10 of 21 passes for 125 yards and a touchdown. He also ran for a score.
For the first time this season, Oregon State's defense resembled the hard-hitting, chest-thumping group that helped the team win a school-record 11 games last year, including a rout of Notre Dame in the Fiesta Bowl.
Blunders by the Wildcats led to all four of Oregon State's first-half touchdowns.
Halfback Clarence Farmer, who gained just 55 yards on 19 carries after running for a career-high 158 against Oregon last week, fumbled at his own 36, and James Allen recovered. It took the Beavers eight plays to get to the Wildcats 2, and on third-and-goal, Smith rolled left and hit James Newson for the touchdown.
Arizona had to punt on its next possession, and freshman walk-on Cole Clasen broke free and got his left hand on the ball. It bobbled along 15 yards before Kenny Farley recovered it in the end zone for the score.
The next mistake belonged to Arizona quarterback Jason Johnson, who overthrew Maiosi Leonard and had his pass intercepted by Mitch Meeuwsen. Simonton bolted for a 31-yard gain before being pushed out at the 2, and Smith dove underneath for the score two plays later.
Behind Anderson, who's being groomed as Smith's successor, the Beavers drove 64 yards for their final score of the half - with help from three pass-interference penalties by Arizona. Anderson threw a perfect fade pass to Clasen for a 26-yard touchdown that made it 28-0.
Simonton moved into fifth place on the Pac-10 career scoring list with 336 points. He is 54 behind the top scorer, UCLA kicker John Lee.