STANFORD, Calif. (AP) - Matt Kegel passed for 331 yards and three touchdowns, and Sammy Moore's 64-yard punt return set up another score as No. 6 Washington State defeated Stanford 24-14 Saturday.
Chris Jordan caught five passes for 97 yards and two touchdowns for the Cougars (6-1, 3-0 Pac-10), who weren't sharp offensively in their first game following a bye week. They struggled to move the ball against a Stanford team that allowed 413 yards and 41 points in the first half alone against No. 5 Southern California a week earlier.
This was supposed to be the Cougars' easy game before consecutive meetings with Oregon State and USC. But their defense kept them in it, knocking Stanford quarterback Trent Edwards out of the game and pounding backup Chris Lewis until Moore's brilliant return set up Kegel's third TD pass to Cody Boyd with 9:45 to play.
Kegel left the game holding his non-throwing shoulder with 13:14 remaining after blitzing linebacker Jared Newberry flattened him from the blind side, but returned two series later. Kegel completed 26 of 47 passes despite constant pressure.
The Cardinal (2-3, 0-3) played their first home game since their Sept. 6 season opener against San Jose State, and 48,526 came out for the school's homecoming as Stanford played a ranked team for the third straight week.
Stanford set up its first touchdown with a 36-yard completion from Edwards to Gerren Crochet that put the Cardinal on the 3, the team's longest play of the season. It took them five plays once they were inside the 3 to get into the end zone, taking advantage of a defensive holding call on third down before Kenneth Tolon's 1-yard TD run.
Mark Bradford caught a 12-yard scoring pass from Lewis with 6:11 left.
Devard Darling helped the Cougars control the clock in their final drive with a spectacular 31-yard catch, reaching over cornerback Stanley Wilson's shoulders to haul in the pass. Moments later, Drew Dunning made a 37-yard field goal with 3:16 to go.
The Cougars, winners of 10 of their last 11 road games, missed a big opportunity late in the third. Kegel passed up a chance to run for an easy score, instead throwing incomplete to Troy Bienemann. Three downs later, holder Brett Johnson bobbled the snap on a field-goal try and attempted a wobbly pass into the end zone that was picked off by Will Svitek.
Dunning, the nation's leading field-goal kicker, also had an extra point blocked in the third quarter.
Washington State managed only 12 yards in the second quarter and 164 for the half and Stanford 102 as the teams combined for 13 punts.
Virgil Williams' interception of Edwards' pass in the third quarter led to Jordan's 22-yard TD catch from Kegel. Washington State has scored 91 points off turnovers this season.
The Cougars struggled to run the ball. Junior Chris Bruhn made his first career start because Jonathan Smith and Jermaine Green were injured.
Will Derting, the Cougars' leading tackler, was dropped from the starting lineup after getting arrested for drunken driving two weeks ago. He pounded Edwards in the third quarter, knocking the freshman out of the game.
By JANIE McCAULEY
AP Sports Writer