Michael Penix Jr. passed for a school-record 516 yards and four touchdowns and ran for another score and Washington beat Arizona 49-39 on Saturday.
Penix hit Rome Odunze on kills for 45 and 48 yards in the decisive third quarter to help the Huskies end a two-game losing streak. The junior transfer entered the game as the second-leading passer in the nation and did not disappoint in a game featuring the Pac-12 Conference’s top two offenses and two of its star quarterbacks.
Penix led the Huskies to 608 total yards on offense and, in addition to breaking Cody Pickett’s passing record of 455 yards, he set the school record for total yards with 529, breaking the record by Marcus Tuiasosopo (509 yards).
Penix led the Huskies to an early 7-0 lead on their first practice, hitting Jalen McMillan deep in the end zone for a 23-yard touchdown. Jayden De Laura tied the game two strokes later when he hit Tetairoa McMillan, who broke a tackle en route to a 46-yard touchdown.
Tailback Cameron Davis put Washington ahead 14-7 with a 1-yard dive early in the second quarter, one of two scoring runs.
The Huskies lead could have been bigger, but the Wildcats defense made two short fourth saves in the first half. Jalen Harris and Jacob Manu stuffed Taulapapa in fourth-and-second in the first quarter and DJ Warnell Jr. stopped Cameron Davis with no gain in fourth-and-first at 19 in the second quarter.
De Laura tied it 14-14 on a 39-yard pass to Dorian Singer, who got wide open on the right sideline when his defender, Jordan Perryman, went lame and began to limp.
The Wildcats left 2:23 on the clock, however, and Penix separated the defense on a 12-play, 75-yard drive capped by a 4-yard pass to Sam Adams II with 8 seconds left for a 21 half. -14. conduct. Penix was 9 of 11 on the drive for 72 yards.
He kept rolling, hitting Odunze for a 45-yard touchdown and a 28-14 lead just 46 seconds from the start of the second period. And he added an 8-yard run midway through the quarter to respond to a 3-yard touchdown dive from Jonah Coleman and keep the Huskies up 35-21.
Then Penix appeared to put the game out of reach with another deep shot on a wide-open Odunze, who grabbed the 48-yard touchdown to make it 42-24 with 1:56 left in the third.
De Laura, last seen in Seattle leading an upset against the Huskies last season for Washington State, escaped the Washington rush again and again to keep Arizona in her. He hit Tetairoa McMillan again midway through the fourth, this time from 26 yards out, to cut the lead to 42-37. But Penix led another long drive capped by a 19-yard run from Davis with 5:25 to go for the win.
De Laura finished 25 of 34 for 400 yards and four touchdowns.
Arizona: No sacks, no forced turnovers. De Laura planted a Washington State flag on the Huskies turf after leading the Cougars to victory over UW last season. Although he played a spirited game, the Wildcats showed they needed more than the sophomore quarterback to compete. Other than those four saves, they made very few defensive plays.
Washington: The Huskies stopped their slide and won their sixth in a row against Arizona. They should have a more talented roster than the lower-tier conference foe. But Washington will learn how far it’s come this season under Kalen DeBoer with road trips in two of its next three games.
Odunze became the first wide receiver in Washington to record more than 100 receiving yards in four straight games after finishing with nine catches for 169 yards. Odunze’s first touchdown came in a circus catch where he sent the ball high in the air and then caught it as it crossed the goal line. The second touchdown take came after he broke free of the defense. Penix found him standing at 1 for easy entry.
Arizona: After a week off, the Wildcats host 7 USC on Oct. 29.
Washington: The Huskies will travel to Cal next Saturday.
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