PULLMAN — Connor Halliday threw for 383 yards and five touchdowns as Washington State beat Southern Utah 48-10 on Saturday in its home opener.
Washington State (2-1) also got a long interception return for a touchdown from Damante Horton for the second consecutive game.
Southern Utah (2-1), an FCS program, was scoreless in the second half and gained just 219 yards in the game.
Halliday completed 32 of 41 passes and was intercepted once. Washington State gained 464 yards of total offense in the game. Dom Williams caught three passes for 101 yards and two touchdowns.
Aaron Cantu completed 22 of 30 passes for Southern Utah, but was intercepted three times.
Washington State was coming off a 10-7 win at Southern California that knocked the Trojans from the Top 25.
Southern Utah beat an FBS team, South Alabama, in its season opener, but had less success against Washington State of the Pacific-12.
This was the first meeting between the teams.
Washington State completed passes on its first five plays of the game, the fifth covering 43 yards from Halliday to Williams for a touchdown and a 7-0 lead less than 2 minutes into the contest.
Southern Utah replied with a drive that stalled on the 23, leading to a 40-yard field goal by Colton Cook.
Washington State struck right back with a 61-yard drive that required just five plays, with Isiah Myers catching a 10-yard touchdown pass from Halliday for a 14-3 lead.
Halliday completed his first 10 passes of the game.
After WSU was forced to punt from its own end zone, Southern Utah took possession on WSU’s 29. Raysean Martin punched over from the 3-yard line as the Thunderbirds cut WSU’s lead to 14-10.
Washington State marched down to the 19 on its next possession, but Halliday was intercepted in the end zone by a diving LeShaun Sims to kill the drive. Then DaQuawn Brown intercepted Cantu to give the ball back to WSU at midfield. Three plays later, Halliday fired a 55-yard touchdown bomb to Dom Williams for a 21-10 lead.
On Southern Utah’s next drive, Cantu was intercepted at the 28 by Horton, who returned the ball untouched for 72 yards and a 28-10 WSU lead that stood at halftime. Horton’s 70-yard interception return against Southern Cal last weekend was WSU’s only touchdown of that game.
Andrew Furney kicked field goals of 46 and 30 yards in the third to give WSU a 34-10 lead.
Deone Bucannon picked off a Cantu pass and returned it to SUU’s 18. Halliday threw a 1-yard touchdown pass to Gabe Marks in the end zone for a 41-10 lead.
Halliday added a 4-yard touchdown pass to Vince Mayle in the fourth.
Union High School grad and Southern Utah linebacker Zak Browning had seven tackles, three solo in the game.
WASHINGTON ST. 48, S. UTAH 10
S. Utah 3 7 0 0–10
Washington St. 14 14 13 7–48
WSU–D.Williams 43 pass from Halliday (Furney kick), 13:03.
SUt–FG Cook 40, 6:02.
WSU–Myers 10 pass from Halliday (Furney kick), 3:56.
SUt–Martin 3 run (Cook kick), 10:55.
WSU–D.Williams 55 pass from Halliday (Furney kick), 4:22.
WSU–Horton 72 interception return (Furney kick), :38.
WSU–FG Furney 46, 8:38.
WSU–FG Furney 30, 4:20.
WSU–Marks 1 pass from Halliday (Furney kick), 2:53.
WSU–Mayle 3 pass from Halliday (Furney kick), 11:07.
First downs 13 22
Rushes-yards 34-73 17-54
Passing 146 410
Comp-Att-Int 22-30-3 35-48-1
Return Yards 18 136
Punts-Avg. 7-42.1 3-37.7
Fumbles-Lost 1-0 1-0
Penalties-Yards 5-53 5-39
Time of Possession 35:38 24:22
RUSHING–S. Utah, Brown 9-32, Martin 11-28, Taele 7-10, Te’o 2-5, Sharp 3-3, Cantu 2-(minus 5). Washington St., Caldwell 6-26, Laufasa 2-14, Apodaca 3-8, Mason 3-7, T.West 1-1, Halliday 2-(minus 2).
PASSING–S. Utah, Cantu 22-30-3-146. Washington St., Halliday 32-41-1-383, Apodaca 3-7-0-27.
RECEIVING–S. Utah, Allphin 6-43, E.Pedersen 4-47, Allie 3-14, Moala 3-11, Norris 3-11, Taele 2-16, Martin 1-4. Washington St., Marks 7-83, Cracraft 6-87, K.Williams 5-18, Myers 4-45, Brooks 4-20, D.Williams 3-101, Ratliff 2-31, Mayle 2-14, Bartolone 1-8, Caldwell 1-3.