BY SPNW Staff 11:04AM 11/23/2011

Fantastic Apple Cup Plays For UW Rooters

Sportspress Northwest provides a sampling of Apple Cup plays that delighted Washington Huskies supporters. Now you decide: Which is most memorable?

Washington’s Hugh McElhenny ran 83 yards for a touchdown to culminate his 296-yard performance against the Cougars in 1950. / DR Collection

Over the course of 104 meetings, the Washington-Washington State rivalry has produced scads of memorable and remarkable plays. For University of Washington fans, no Apple Cup play remains as vivid as Warren Moon’s tipped-ball touchdown pass to Spider Gaines in 1975. Or maybe it was Kai Ellis taking a backward pass away from Matt Kegel in the third overtime in 2002. Below are a sampling of plays that brought delight to Huskies’ rooters.

Frank Waskowitz-To-By Haines / 1936

With both Washington (No. 6) and Washington State (No. 20) ranked for the first time, UW’s Frank Waskowitz fired a 45-yard touchdown pass to Byron Haines, sparking a 40-0 rout that sent the Huskies to Pasadena for the first time since 1926.

Ernie Steele’s Returns / 1940

It wasn’t the 87-yard kickoff return touchdown that irked WSU coach Babe Hollingbery, but Steele’s 83-yard fourth-quarter punt return for a touchdown. As Steele whizzed past Hollingberry, the Babe took off his hat, flung it to the ground, and stomped on it.

“The $100,000 Miss” / 1942

With a trip to the Rose Bowl on the line, the Cougars played UW to a scoreless tie. The Cougars would have gone to Pasadena if Nick Susoeff caught a 30-yard pass in the fourth quarter, but the ball slipped through his hands in the end zone.  Susoeff’s miss cost the Cougars $100,000, the participant’s Rose Bowl share.

The Gift TD & McElhenny/ 1950

(A) Late in Washington’s 52-21 win in Spokane, the Huskies allowed the Cougars to score a touchdown so that UW could get the ball back and give quarterback Don Heinrich a chance to set an NCAA completions record. Heinrich got the record, the Cougars never lived down the embarrassment. (B) In the same game, Washington’s Hugh McElhenny punctuated a 296-yard, 5-TD performance with an 83-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter.

McKeta’s 2-Point Conversion / 1960

Heading into the final period, neither team had scored. But WSU struck quickly when Melvin Melin threw a short TD pass to Hugh Campbell. On Washington’s next possession, the Huskies drove to the WSU one-yard line and Kermit Jorgensen took it in for the TD. UW coach Jim Owens could have opted for a tie. Instead, he instructed Bob Hivner to attempt a two-point conversion. Don McKeta, playing on a leg sewn up with 13 stitches from a gash he’d received in the first half, caught the pass that gave Washington the win and a berth in the Rose Bowl.

Norm Dicks’ Interception / 1962

With the score tied 21-21 in the final minute, Washington scored on a safety. Then a Norm Dicks (yes, that Norm Dicks) interception at the Washington State seven-yard line set up the winning field goal with 20 seconds left in the first official “Apple Cup” game.

Burleson-Moon-Gaines / 1975

Leading 27-14 with 2:47 to play, WSU coach Jim Sweeney bent to the urgings of his players who wanted to rub it in. Unfortunately for Sweeney and the Cougars, Al Burleson intercepted a John Hopkins pass and returned 93 yards for a TD. A minute later, UW scored the tying TD on a tipped pass to Spider Gaines and kicked the PAT for a 28-27 win, greasing Sweeney’s resignation.

Skanski’s TD  / 1981

With the Rose Bowl on the line for both UW and WSU, Skansi made the key play when quarterback Steve Pelluer threw a ball up for grabs in the end zone. It had all the earmarks of an interception, but Skansi spun, leaped over a sprawling Nate Bradley and landed on his chin with the ball in its breadhooks. The play erased a 7-3 WSU lead and sparked a 23-10 win that sent UW to its second consecutive Rose Bowl. “I couldn’t believe that catch,” said Pelluer.

Huard To Pathon / 1996

The Cougars made an amazing rally, coming all the way back from a 24-point deficit to force overtime. But Washington won in the extra session when Brock Huard tossed a three-yard TD pass to Jerome Pathon (first OT game in Apple Cup history).

Dane Looker-to-Joe Jarzynka / 1999

UW receiver Dane Looker took a backwards pass from QB Marques Tuiasosopo, then threw a 55-yard TD pass to Joe Jarzynka, greasing Washington’s 24-14 victory at Husky Stadium.

Kegel’s Backward Pass / 2002

After John Anderson’s fifth field goal gave UW a 29-26 lead in the third overtime, Kai Ellis of the Huskies batted down Matt Kegel’s attempted pass, caught it, fumbled it and got it back. Officials ruled that it was a backward pass, a fumble and the UW’s possession, which ended the game and prompted a near riot.

Cody Pickett-To-Corey Williams / 2003

The No. 8-ranked Cougars sported a 19-14 lead with 1:10 left, but couldn’t contain Pickett, whose 21-yard TD pass to Williams knocked 9-2 WSU into the Holiday Bowl.


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