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Oregon State fumbles away chance to beat Stanford

Beavers QB Nolan loses ball on scramble in closing seconds

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Stanford's Curtis Robinson (2), Jonathan McGill (32) and Stephen Herron (15) celebrate Robinson's recovery of an Oregon State fumble during the last minute of the second half in an NCAA college football game in Corvallis, Ore., Saturday, Dec. 12, 2020. Stanford won 27-24.
Stanford's Curtis Robinson (2), Jonathan McGill (32) and Stephen Herron (15) celebrate Robinson's recovery of an Oregon State fumble during the last minute of the second half in an NCAA college football game in Corvallis, Ore., Saturday, Dec. 12, 2020. Stanford won 27-24. (AP Photo/Amanda Loman) Photo Gallery

CORVALLIS, Ore. — Davis Mills passed for 292 yards and a touchdown, and ran for a score to lead Stanford to a 27-24 victory over Oregon State on Saturday night.

Mills completed 21 of 29 passes and did not commit a turnover.

Austin Jones added 126 yards rushing for the Cardinal (3-2), who have been in road-warrior mentality the past three weeks.

Jet Toner’s 39-yard field goal with 1:48 remaining broke a 24-24 tie and the Cardinal defense forced a turnover to seal the victory.

The Beavers (2-4) were in position to tie or win the game on their final possession, but quarterback Chance Nolan fumbled after an 11-yard run and Stanford linebacker Curtis Robinson recovered at the Cardinal’s 16-yard line to seal the win.

The play was reviewed and confirmed.

It was a tough ending for Nolan, who performed well in his second career start in place of injured starter Tristan Gebbia, who had season-ending surgery on his hamstring this week. Nolan completed 17 of 30 for 221 yards and three touchdowns.

Mills’ 6-yard touchdown run followed by a 2-point conversion pass to fullback Houston Heimuli gave the Cardinal a 24-21 lead with 13:03 remaining.

Oregon State drove to the Stanford 3-yard line on their ensuing possession and the offense remained on the field on fourth-and-2, but following a delay of game penalty on the Beavers, Everett Hayes kicked a 26-yard field goal to tie the game at the 7:18 mark.

The Beavers received a boost from wide receiver Tre’Shaun Harrison, who was eligible to play for the first time Saturday and responded with five catches for 91 yards.

Harrison’s 61-yard catch early in the second quarter set up Nolan’s 8-yard touchdown pass to Zeriah Beason and a 14-6 lead.

Oregon State running back Jermar Jefferson returned after missing last week’s game at Utah due to COVID-19 testing and contact tracing protocols. The nation’s third-leading rusher managed 80 yards on 18 carries before limping off the field early in the fourth quarter.

On the opening possession of the third quarter, Mills hit Simi Fehoko on a 47-yard flea flicker to the 1, and Mills scored on the next play giving Stanford its first lead at 16-14.

Oregon State answered with a 75-yard scoring drive culminated by a 30-yard touchdown pass to Tyjon Lindsey, putting the Beavers back on top 21-16 midway through the third quarter.

Stanford spent the entire week practicing in Corvallis due to the Santa Clara Public Health Department’s new emergency directive Nov. 28 that prohibited training and competition for the Cardinal in the county.

THE TAKEAWAY

Stanford: Playing on the road has not been an issue season for Stanford, which had just one home game this season due to COVID-19 related issues.

Stanford played without receivers Michael Wilson and Connor Wedington, who were hurt in the Washington game last week and will miss the remainder of the season.

Oregon State: The Beavers have been competitive in every game, but a fourth loss likely puts the them out of bowl-game contention. Oregon State’s last bowl-game appearance came in 2013.

UP NEXT

Stanford will be on the road for its final regular season game Dec. 19, opponent to be determined.

Oregon State will play its final regular season game Dec 19, opponent and location to be determined.

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