The Oregon soccer team recorded one of the biggest wins in program history on Saturday, a 35-28 outing of No. 3 Ohio State in front of 100,482 fans at the stadium. from Ohio. One of the biggest crowds to ever watch the Ducks saw one of the biggest games they’ve ever played, as the No. 12 OU football team validated their status as a playoff contender of college football by dominating the Buckeyes.
“Big game for Oregon; big game for the Pac-12”, OU coach Mario Cristobal noted.
After workhorse by CJ Verdell third touchdown of the day gave the Ducks a 14-point lead early in the second half as Oregon fended off Ohio State’s comeback attempt in front of an increasingly vocal crowd. Freshman tight end Moliki Matavao scored the game-clinching touchdown with 10:10 left in the game and a safety interception Verona McKinley III with 2:50 to play all but sealed.
The win was Oregon’s biggest in intersectional play since at least one win in 2007 at Michigan — and possibly ever. Pac-12 Network analyst Yogi Roth said earlier in the week that an OU win would be the most important non-conference regular season result for any Pac-12 member in history. of the conference.
The Ducks did it without defenders Kayvon Thibodeaux and justin flowe, who did not put on due to injury. Despite their absence, the OU defense managed to hold the reins of Ohio State’s explosive offense for the most part, and Oregon dominated the line of scrimmage offensively.
“It’s hard to put into words the magnitude of coming here through injuries and playing brave, brave football,” Cristobal said.
Verdell finished with 161 rushing yards on 20 carries, including a 14-yard TD rush to open the scoring in the second quarter and a 77-yard burst early in the second half that made it 21-7 . He also had a receiving touchdown in the first half, and his backfield mate Travis Dye scored the touchdown that put Oregon up 28-14 midway through the third quarter.
Strategist Anthony Brown was 17 of 35 passes for 236 yards and two touchdowns, and played a clean game to help Oregon win the turnover battle – McKinley’s interception was the only one to win either other tusks.
Brown’s 14-yard touchdown pass to Matavao in the fourth quarter was Ohio State’s second consecutive touchdown the Ducks responded to on their next possession, as Brown helped Oregon dig deep for finish a close game for the second week in a row.
“He was winning the team towards the end of last season,” Cristobal said. “I think today everyone saw why.”