|#13 Arizona State||7||14||0||14||35|
It was a sweaty palmed, nail-biting affair for both fan bases, but only one team could come out victorious, and it was the #11 Arizona Wildcats. The Wildcats managed to hold off the rival #13 Arizona State Sun Devils 42-35, in a game that came all the way down to the final minute.
The Sun Devils won the opening coin toss and elected to receive the ball to start the game and they quickly regretted that choice. Just three plays into the game, Arizona's Scooby Wright III sacked Taylor Kelly and forced him to fumble, which resulted in a 25-yard touchdown return.
Later in the quarter, the same thing happened to Anu Solomon of the Wildcats. Solomon fumbled the snap on his own two yard line, which was scooped up and run into the end zone by Demetrius Cherry to tie the game.
Not even a minute after Arizona State tied the game, Arizona responded with a 69-yard touchdown pass from Anu Solomon to Samajie Grant. The play was a result of ASU safety Damarious Randall trying to jump the route and faulty open field tackling by the rest of the Sun Devil defense.
The Sun Devils responded with a touchdown pass of their own early in the second quarter, a three-yard pass from Taylor Kelly to Jaelen Strong, who again reeled it in with one hand.
Arizona running back Nick Wilson found the end zone on a 21 yard run to give the Wildcats the 21-14 lead late in the first half. Arizona State once again would respond to the score, this time a seven-yard pass from Taylor Kelly to Demario Richard that knotted the score just before halftime.
The third quarter was dominated by the Wildcats and was truly the turning point of the game. Nick Wilson had two touchdown runs, a one-yard run and a devastating 72-yard run that proved to be the equalizer, as Arizona State never got closer than seven points the rest of the game.
Arizona State benched Taylor Kelly in the fourth quarter and let the gunslinger Mike Bercovici have his chance at a miracle comeback, he nearly did. Bercovici led the Devils down the field for a touchdown on his second drive, resulting in a two yard pass to Kody Kohl.
Anu Solomon delivered what proved to be the dagger with eight and half minutes left. Solomon was flushed out of the pocket on what appeared was going to be a pass thrown away but it was rather a 20-yard touchdown pass Samajie Grant just inside the end zone, making it a 42-28 game.
Bercovici found De'Marieya Nelson for a nine-yard touchdown with five minutes left to cut the lead to 42-35. Arizona State got the ball back with 2:56 left and ended up turning it over on downs as Bercovici tried to force the ball to Jaelen Strong on the sideline and ended up airmailing it out of bounds.
With UCLA losing to Stanford, Arizona not only won the Pac-12 South but they earned themselves a place in the Pac-12 Championship game next Friday in Santa Clara, California. They play the almighty #2 Oregon Ducks, a team in which they have already defeated this season.
As for Arizona State, they wait to see which bowl game they will take part in.