Last-minute scoring drives to pull out a victory bring out the best in Andrew Walter and his Arizona State teammates.
With nine seconds to play, Walter threw his fourth touchdown pass of the night -- a four-yarder to Matt Miller -- to give No. 23 Arizona State a 34-31 victory over Stanford at Tempe, Ariz.
Two weeks ago, Walter and the Sun Devils scored the last 17 points of the game to beat UCLA, 48-42.
The senior quarterback is taking a wild ride to the end of his college career.
“We practice it all the time,” Walter said. “Two minutes left, our backs against the wall, that’s the way we like it.”
Cardinal backup quarterback T.C. Ostrander gave his team a 31-26 lead with a 67-yard touchdown pass to Alex Smith with 2:02 left.
But Walter, who completed 28 of 42 passes for 415 yards and broke John Elway’s Pacific 10 Conference record for career touchdown passes, was four for eight for 79 yards on a 13-play, 80-yard drive for the winning score.
Arizona State improved to 7-2 overall and 4-2 in the conference.
“I’ve been in a lot of college football games,” Arizona State Coach Dirk Koetter said, “and I’ve never been in a game like that.”
Walter has 80 touchdown passes, breaking Elway’s record at Stanford of 77.
“There’s been a lot of people along the road that’s enabled this, and coaches calling great plays,” Walter said of the record. “So as much as everybody is going to talk about me, it’s so many things more than just me.”
Jon Alston’s fourth sack of the game and a holding penalty had left the Sun Devils with a second and 29 on their 43, but Walter threw 19 yards to Derek Hagan, then 11 to Terry Richardson for the first down to keep the drive alive.
“I give a lot of credit to Andrew Walter for his textbook operation out there,” Stanford Coach Buddy Teevens said.
On the touchdown, Walter found Miller deep in the end zone for his second touchdown catch of the game.
Burgess ran for the two-point conversion.
Miller also caught a 52-yard, last-second touchdown pass on the final play of the first half to give Arizona State a 17-14 lead.
The game featured nine turnovers -- five by Stanford (2-4, 4-5), four of them interceptions. ASU had five turnovers and had two punts blocked by Udeme Udofia. Both blocks set up Stanford touchdowns.
Arizona State had a 583-283 advantage in total yards.
Arizona 23, Washington 13 -- Cornerback Wilrey Fontenot returned a fumble 33 yards for the go-ahead touchdown and the Wildcats (2-7, 1-5) gave first-year Coach Mike Stoops his first Pac-10 victory after defeating the lowly Huskies (1-8, 0-6) at Seattle.
Arizona ended a seven-game losing streak this season and shoved Washington into sole possession of last place in the conference with its fourth straight Pac-10 defeat.
Washington had four second-half turnovers to give the Huskies a nation-leading 44 turnovers this season.
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Arizona State’s Andrew Walter broke John Elway’s Pacific 10 Conference record for most touchdown passes in a career:
*--* PLAYER SCHOOL TD Andrew Walter* Arizona State 80 John Elway Stanford 77 Steve Stenstrom Stanford 75 Carson Palmer USC 72 Jason Gesser Washington State 70 Cade McNown UCLA 68