4th Annual Cactus Bowl - Fiesta Bowl | Fiesta Bowl

Despite more than 1,100 yards of total offense and 59 points, the final outcome wasn’t decided until Washington State’s Aaron Price drilled a 22-yard field goal to give the Cougars a 31–28 win over Utah in the 4th Annual Cactus Bowl.

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WSU’s Drew Bledsoe looked the part of the first player to be taken in the National Football League Draft, completing 30 of 46 passes for a Cactus Bowl record 476 yards and two touchdowns. Both scoring tosses went to Phillip Bobo, including a Cactus Bowl record 87-yarder.

The Cougars spurted to a seemingly comfortable 21–0 lead as Bledsoe threw for 196 yards in the first quarter to lead the Cougars on touchdown drives of 72, 90 and 75 yards.

But the Utes, making their first bowl appearance in nearly three decades, staged a furious rally to tie the game by the end of the third quarter.

The Utes’ rally became official when quarterback Frank Dolce threw a 10-yard touchdown pass to Sean Williams and Keith Williams had a 25-yard scoring run to cut Utah’s defecit to 21–14.

After the two teams exchanged long touchdown passes — Bledsoe hit Bobo on a 48-yard pass, Dolce connected with Henry Lusk on a 49-yard pass — Utah running back Pierre Jones scored on an eight-yard run to tie the game heading to the fourth quarter.

The Cougars regained the lead at 31–28 on the short field goal by Price, but Utah recovered a fumble and had the ball first-and-goal at the WSU five-yard line. The Cougars’ defense responded by keeping the Utes followed by Utah’s short missed field-goal attempt that would have tied the game.

Bobo logged seven receptions for a Cactus Bowl record 212 yards and Shaumbe Wright-Fair posted 123 yards rushing and two touchdowns for the Cougars.

Dolce finished with 316 yards passing, Keith Williams added 112 yards on the ground, and S. Williams finished with 127 yards receiving for Utah.

  • Stadium:

    Arizona Stadium

  • Attendance:

    40,826

  • Offensive Player of the Game:

    Drew Bledsoe, Washington State

  • Defensive Player of the Game:

    Kareem Leary, Utah

  • Head Coaches:

    Mike Price, Washington State - Ron McBride, Utah

  • Weather:

    Cloudy, 61 degrees

Quarter Scores

Scoring1234F
Utah01414028
Washington State2170331

Yardstick

UTAHWSU
20First Downs28
39-179Rushes-Yards41-144
316Passing Yards3492
21-40-0Passes32-48-1
26Return Yards60
6-43.0Punts6-36.5
3-1Fumbles-Lost4-2
7-55Penalties-Yards18-136

How They Scored

UTAHWSU
07Shaumbe Wright-Fair 3 yard run (Aaron Price kick)
014Phillip Bobo 87 yard pass from Drew Bledsoe (Aaron Price kick)
021Shaumbe Wright-Fair 3 yard run (Aaron Price kick)
721Sean Williams 10 yard pass from Frank Dolce (Chris Yergensen kick)
1421Keith Williams 25 yard run (Chris Yergensen kick)
1428Phillip Bobo 48 yard pass from Drew Bledsoe (Aaron Price kick)
2028Henry Lusk 49 yard pass from Frank Dolce (kick failed)
2828Pierre Jones 8 yard run (Scott Murry pass from Frank Dolce)
2831Aaron Price 22 yard field goal

Individual Statistics

Rushing
UTAHKeith Williams 13-112, Pierre Jones 11-43, Henry Lusk 1-10, Jamal Anderson 4-7, Frank Dolce 9-5, Sean Williams 1-2.
WSUShaumbe Wright-Fair 27-123, Phillip Bobo 2-16, Derek Sparks 3-11, Mike Pattinson 2-5, Jay Dumas 1-(-3), Drew Bledsoe 6-(-8).
Passing
UTAHFrank Dolce 21-40-0-316.
WSUDrew Bledsoe 30-46-1-476, Mike Pattinson 2-2-0-16.
Receiving
UTAHSean Williams 7-127, Greg Hooks 5-75, Henry Lusk 4-75, Keith Williams 2-6, Pierre Jones 1-17, Jamal Anderson 1-8, Joe Welch 1-8.
WSUC.J. Davis 8-134, Phillip Bobo 7-212, Shaumbe Wright-Fair 6-21, Deron Pointer 5-73, Calvin Schexnayder 4-43, Clarence Williams 1-7, Brett Carolan 1-2.