Washington Huskies defeats Fight Hunger Bowl under Tuiasosopo: Instant Reactions

Ed Szczepanski-USA TODAY Sports

Despite injuries to both Keith Price and Bishop Sankey, the Huskies were able to pull out a victory against BYU in the Fight Hunger Bowl in San Fransisco, 31-16.

Washington came out and dominated the opening drive for reach team. Despite missing starting safety Will Shamburger, sent home for a violation of team rules, and cornerback Marcus Peters, suspended for the first quarter due to an academic issue, the defense started strong thanks to some pure competitive fire. Every hit had the potential to cause a concussion. Defenders sprinted sideline-to-sideline. BYU still had a first down on their opening drive. After that, the defense played the part of a wet paper bag for the rest of the half until the red zone had been reached, where it held the Cougars to field goals on three of their four trips.

The offense came out strong as well, marching down the field with almost no issue on their first drive. The offense came from special teams. John Ross returned a kick 100 yards officially for his first return touchdown of his career. It had been foreshadowed with several near-misses, and it finally happened, Jesse Callier returned a kick after BYU stopped kicking to Ross. He got the ball back across midfield which led to some jitterbug jukes by Bishop Sankey on his second TD of the game.

Going into the half, Washington's 21-16 lead was tenuous at best. Then, the first-team offense did something they had done in every game this season: scored on their first possession of the second half. The two teams trading punts was interrupted only with a missed 45-yard field  goal and a Keith Price interception that should have been called back.

Throughout the doldrums of the third quarter and early fourth, Price and Sankey both sustained injuries and did not return. In what is the final game of Price's UW career and likely the final game of Sankey's Washington career, it is really unfair that they would not be able to finish.

The game was officially over when John Timu intercepted a Taysom Hill pass with under two minutes left, and that was that.

Final Instant Dots of the season:

  • Price didn't have the numbers of one of his best games, but I have to believe that he had a bigger effect than any other offensive player, Bishop Sankey and Deontae Cooper inluded, on the offense. He already called a lot of the plays at the line of scrimmage, and I have to believe that  he played a huge role in the offense and in almost all of its success, while he was in.

    He was the most prolific passer in the history of Washington football. He had a great, great career. Two great seasons sandwiched one mediocre one, but his accuracy, poise, toughness and leadership will never be forgotten.

  • Sankey had a good game, not great, by his standards. That second touchdown run though... It was a shame when he went out. I would hope that he won't go out that way, but thank you Bishop. All of the readers of Instant Reactions know he is my mancrush (Deontae Cooper is my hero, there is a difference). Watch this play.

  • Special teams went to Washington in a big, big way. The two big kick returns played a big role. The punt coverage, it was nice.

  • Hill ran all over the Washington D in the first half. Justin Wilcox, in what looks like his last game at Washington, helped the defense to tighten up the running lanes in the second half in shutting out the Cougars.

  • Tre Watson had the game of his career, a great way to go out. He was a ball-seeking missile all game long. he broke up passes, and was all-around disruptive.

  • Great season, guys

  • ASJ is gone.
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