(Saturday, December 5th)
Final Score: Washington 42, (19) California 10
Seattle, WA (Sports Network) - Jake Locker accounted for five Huskies' scores, throwing three touchdown passes and running two in himself, leading Washington past No. 19 California, 42-10, to close out the regular season for both teams.
Locker was 19-of-23 for 248 yards and ran for an additional 77 yards on 14 carries for Washington (5-7, 4-5 Pac-10), which has to consider its 2009 season an improvement after going without a win in 2008.
"I'm really proud of our football team. We've been challenging these guys for 365 days now. Thinking back...where this program was and where those kids were mentally, to where they are tonight in that locker room, it's really something pretty special," said first-year Huskies head coach Steve Sarkisian. "These kids are extremely resilient, they battled, they competed and I'm so happy for our senior class."
Chris Polk ran for 94 yards and a score on 22 carries, while Devin Aguilar recorded two receiving TDs among a five-catch, 72-yard game. Jermaine Kearse led all receivers with seven receptions and 147 yards with a score.
Kevin Riley struggled in completing 14-of-32 passes for 215 yards and a touchdown. He was sacked five times and lost two fumbles as California (8-4, 5-4) was outgained 463-296.
The Golden Bears were coming off consecutive defeats of nationally-ranked conference foes Arizona and Stanford before a bye last week. It was the first time since 1950 that Cal had toppled a pair of top-25 programs in back-to-back weeks.
Locker's 40-yard touchdown pass to Kearse on Washington's opening possession provided the game's first points nearly midway through the first quarter.
Vince D'Amato, who missed a 42-yard field goal on Cal's first series, was true from 29 yards to cap the ensuing possession. Shane Vereen ripped off a 50-yard run to reach the Huskies' 14, but three more plays gained only two yards.
"They (Washington) did a nice job of pressuring us. Kevin had to pull it down a lot. They played really hard. They had a nice scheme coming after us," said California head coach Jeff Tedford.
Things stayed that way into the second quarter where the Huskies went up 14-3 on Locker's 19-yard scamper roughly four minutes in. Aguilar gave the hosts good field position with a 26-yard punt return to the Bears' 34 and hauled in an 11-yard pass on first down.
A third straight Golden Bear punt gave the ball back to Washington with about five minutes left until halftime, and Locker led a 10-play, 81-yard drive that ended in his two-yard scoring run for a 21-3 Huskies' lead at the break.
Straight out of the break it was a 28-3 game as Locker hit Aguilar for a 21- yard touchdown to cap a quick 65-yard drive.
Just as quick, though, Cal was celebrating its first touchdown -- a 22-yard scoring strike to Nyan Boateng to finish off an 87-yard drive that needed just five plays. Riley moved the ball down the field in chunks with 38 and 32-yard completions.
Polk's 34-yard kickoff return set the Huskies up at midfield and Locker re- established a 25-point advantage with a 13-yard TD pass to Aguilar with 7:41 still left in the third quarter.
The Golden Bears went four-and-out on their next series, then punted it away when facing a 4th-and-26 the next time around. Yet another three-and-out shortly into the fourth quarter was followed by a Cal turnover after Riley was sacked and fumbled it away at his own 41.
Washington capitalized on Polk's 10-yard TD run, made possible when Locker found Aguilar for 21 yards on 4th-and-5.
Riley's fumble on the next series all but sealed the Bears' fate with under three minutes to play.
Cal finished out the regular season winning five of seven games despite the lopsided loss...The Bears had won six of the last seven meetings with Washington, which leads the all-time series 47-38-4...Marvin Jones hauled in six balls for 107 yards in the loss, while Vereen rushed 16 times for 92 yards and caught three passes for 25 yards...Washington senior defensive end Daniel Te'o-Nesheim had three sacks to end the season with 11, establishing the school sack record.
12/05 22:58:50 ET