The Stanford Cardinal just barely beat Oregon State on the road on Thursday night. Thanks to an ankle injury, Cardinal running back and Heisman candidate Bryce Love sat on the sidelines. But Stanford quarterback Keller Chryst, who struggled all night, threw a touchdown pass with less than 30 seconds left to escape Corvallis with a 15-14 victory:
Oregon State managed to get down Oregon State’s 41 yard line, but the Beavers threw an interception on the last play of the game to seal Stanford’s victory.
With 2:38 left, Oregon State had a costly fumble, which was recovered by Stanford inside Beaver territory. Chryst threw three straight incomplete passes, but on fourth down, he found Kaden Smith, who made a heck of a catch, to give his team life:
Oregon State took advantage of Love’s absence until that last game-winning drive, and it still held the Cardinal offense to just 222 total yards and three field goals on the night until the last touchdown.
Oregon State’s offense didn’t put up a ton of points, scoring two touchdowns in the second and third quarters, but it was enough to give it the edge over a struggling Stanford offense early on. The Beavers’ first touchdown was set up by this beautiful reception from Beaver offensive lineman Fred Lauina:
For Stanford, this keeps the opportunity to make it to the Pac-12 title game in December viable, but its schedule doesn’t get any easier. The Cardinal still have to face Washington State, Washington, Cal, and Notre Dame before the season is over. Depending on if Love can get healthy, that stretch could get ugly.
On the flip side, Oregon State interim head coach Cory Hall has to be proud of how hard his Beaver team fought. Hall likely won’t get the full-time job replacing Gary Andersen, but the athletic administration has to be at least a little happy with the unexpected way the game went.