Washington running back Wayne Taulapapa, who transferred from Virginia, rushed for two touchdowns and 107 yards and the No. 17 Huskies beat Colorado 54-7 on Saturday for their fifth consecutive win.
Taulapapa, who is mourning three of his former Virginia teammates who were fatally shot last weekend, scored from 8 and 2 yards out to get the Huskies (9-2, 6-2 Pac-12) to a 21-0 lead. Cameron Davis added two more scores for Washington, which finished 7-0 at home.
The victory gave coach Kalen DeBoer nine wins in his first season, a school record. And it kept the Huskies in the race for a berth in the conference title game with one contest to go, though they need lots of help after USC clinched a spot earlier Saturday.
Washington quarterback Michael Penix Jr. passed for a season-low 229 yards, though he figured in the game’s most electric play. Penix handed the ball off to Jalen McMillan on the double reverse, then eventually found the receiver in the left flat. McMillan weaved through the secondary, breaking four tackles on the way to a 27-yard touchdown for a 14-0 lead. He finished with eight catches for 98 yards.
The Huskies led 33-0 at halftime after scoring 12 points in the final 1:21.
Washington held Colorado (1-10, 1-7) to 202 total yards in their fifth loss in a row. Colorado didn’t pass 100 total yards until quarterback J.T. Shrout found Montana Lemonious-Craig for a 69-yard touchdown with 1:45 left in the third quarter. The seven points matched a season low for the Buffaloes.
Washington painted the hashmarks orange at the 1, 15 and 41 in tribute to D’Sean Perry, Devin Chandler and Lavel Davis Jr., the Virginia football players who were killed this week by a fellow student while returning from a field trip in Washington, D.C.
“Neither distance nor institutional change can ever sever the relationships and bonds we formed,” Taulapapa tweeted following news of the killings.
Fifth-year senior Peyton Henry, who kicked the winning field goal in last week’s upset of Oregon, got the largest cheer from the crowd on senior night. Then he broke a scoring record — finishing with a field goal and six extra points to give him a total of 384 career points, topping Jeff Jaeger’s record of 380 set from 1983-86.
Colorado: It’s almost over. That’s about the only positive that came out of the game for the reeling Buffaloes, who fell behind 47-0 and had their worst offensive performance of this (very long) season.
Washington: The Huskies kept alive their long-shot hopes for a Pac-12 Conference championship berth. They’ll need a win in the Apple Cup and lots of help. If the Huskies can win out, a plum bowl assignment likely awaits.
Colorado hosts No. 10 Utah next Saturday.
Washington travels to rival Washington State next Saturday.
— The Associated Press