Sun Devils race past Arizona, 58-21

D.J. Foster ran for 124 yards and two touchdowns, and No. 13

Arizona State dismantled rival Arizona 58-21 Saturday night to earn

home-field advantage in next week’s Pac-12 championship game.

Arizona State (10-2, 8-1 Pac-12) won last year’s game by scoring

24 points in the fourth quarter and raced out to a 27-point lead by

the midpoint of the second this time.

After scoring the second-most points in Territorial Cup history,

Arizona State will host No. 8 Stanford in next Saturday’s Pac-12

title game with a spot in the Rose Bowl on the line.

Taylor Kelly threw for 274 yards and two touchdowns, De’Marieya

Nelson ran for two scores and the Sun Devils had no trouble without

leading rusher and scorer Marion Grice.

The defense forced four turnovers, including a 64-yard

interception return by Damarious Randle in the third quarter.

Arizona (7-5, 4-5) fell flat in trying to boost its bowl

pedigree.

Ka’Deem Carey ran for 157 yards and a touchdown, but the

Wildcats couldn’t get out of their own way and had no chance of

stopping Arizona State’s offense.

Arizona’s B.J. Denker had three interceptions after throwing

four the first 11 games of the season.

The Territorial Cup is the oldest rivalry trophy in college

football – dating to 1899 – and the 87th version had an added dash

of hype, fueled by momentum and raised stakes.

Both teams were coming off their biggest wins in years: Arizona

over Oregon and Arizona State over UCLA.

With the Wildcats in town and so much on the line, Sun Devil

Stadium was packed, a buzz in the air like few times over the past

several years.

The Sun Devils put on quite a show, too, running over and

through the jittery Wildcats in the first half.

On offense, Arizona State didn’t seem to miss Grice (injured

leg), using a mix of pass and run to score on its first four

possessions.

Zane Gonzalez made a pair of field goals, Kelly used a fake to

set up Darwin Rogers for a 38-yard touchdown and Foster ran for 50

of 53 yards on a scoring drive he capped with a 14-yard touchdown

run.

Nelson added his first career touchdown, a 1-yard run to put

Arizona State up 27-0 midway through the second quarter.

The Wildcats didn’t seem ready for the spotlight.

Arizona opened with delay of game penalty before getting off its

first snap, went backward on its opening drive and gave Arizona

State the ball at the 24 when Drew Riggleman shanked a 12-yard punt

over ASU’s bench.

After holding Arizona State to a field goal, the defense had a

breakdown, biting on what it thought was a run play to leave Rogers

wide open for a TD.

Denker then threw a ball up for grabs into double coverage,

leading to an interception by Alden Darby that set up Nelson’s TD

run.

Arizona also had trouble getting Carey going, too – some of it

apparently by design.

The nation’s second-leading rusher didn’t have a carry in the

first nine minutes and was twice stopped on fourth down near

midfield. On the first try, he lost seven yards, giving Arizona

State a short field to set up Foster’s touchdown run.

Trailing by 27, Arizona finally got some momentum going and

marched in for a 1-yard touchdown run by Denker.

After Arizona’s Jake Smith hooked a 42-yard field goal wide

left, Gonzalez made one from 23 yards in the half’s closing

seconds, putting the Sun Devils up 30-7 while breaking the school

record with his 18th straight made field goal.

Carey finally started to find some room to open the second half

and scored on an 8-yard run.

It didn’t matter by then.

Denker followed with another mistake, missing an open receiver

downfield and throwing an underneath pass that Randle intercepted

and raced in for a touchdown.

Arizona’s Garic Wharton scooped up a fumble by Denker for a

4-yard touchdown, but Kelly answered by finding Jaelen Strong for a

61-yard touchdown that made it 44-21.

Foster scored on 7-yard run and Nelson went in from yard out,

making it the most lopsided game in the series since Arizona State

beat Arizona 56-14 in 1996.