STANFORD, Calif. (AP) — Travis Wilson threw a 3-yard touchdown pass to Kenneth Scott in the second overtime, sending No. 25 Utah to a 20-17 win over Stanford on Saturday night.
Kaelin Clay caught a 25-yard TD pass on the first play of overtime before the Cardinal came back with the tying score. Jordan Williamson kicked a career-long 51-yard field goal — the same one Stanford passed up late in the fourth quarter — to start the second session, setting the stage for the Utes’ dramatic finish.
Wilson found Scott on an inside slant on third-and-1. Scott jumped up, lifted his arms in the air and was swarmed by teammates streaming into the end zone, spoiling Stanford’s Senior Day celebration.
Utah (7-3, 4-3 Pac-12) snapped a two-game losing streak and clinched its first winning season since 2011. The Cardinal (5-5, 3-4) dropped consecutive games for the first time since October 2009.
Stanford had been 10-0 following a loss under coach David Shaw, and suddenly the two-time defending Pac-12 champions have bigger concerns. The Cardinal need to win one of their final two games — at improved rival California and No. 14 UCLA — just to become bowl-eligible.
Stanford hasn’t missed a bowl game since Jim Harbaugh’s second year as coach in 2008.
The teams traded fruitless possessions for most of the game as the defenses dominated. Utah’s Tom Hackett and Stanford’s Ben Rhyne took turns flipping field position behind booming punts, and the Utes’ rugby-style kicker often crushed the competition.
The Cardinal still had a couple of chances to break the stalemate in regulation.
Instead, Shaw opted to punt from Utah’s 34 with less than 2 minutes to play instead of allowing Williamson to kick a 51-yard field goal, drawing boos from the home crowd. Michael Rector also dropped a deep pass from Kevin Hogan in the final seconds that would’ve put the Cardinal inside the Utah 20.
Clay, whose careless goal-line fumble swayed the momentum in a loss to Oregon last week, atoned for the mistake by putting Utah ahead on the TD catch to start overtime. The Cardinal came back in a hurry, with Hogan hitting tight end Austin Hooper for a 14-yard touchdown.
Nate Orchard sacked Hogan to force Stanford into the long field goal in the second overtime. Orchard finished with 3 1/2 sacks to push his total to 16 1/2 sacks this season, eclipsing Jimmy Bellamy’s school record of 15 in 1991 with two games to play.
Wilson threw for 177 yards and two touchdowns — both in overtime — as Utah improved to 2-1 in overtime this season. Stanford hadn’t played an overtime game since upending Oregon in 2012 on Williamson’s winning field goal.
Hogan threw for 104 yards and the two TDs but struggled to move the offense most of the day. The most promise either offense showed was at the start.
Stanford converted a fourth-and-1 on the opening drive, pitching it to Christian McCaffrey for a 37-yard run to the Utah 10. Two plays later, Hogan threw a 3-yard touchdown pass to fullback Lee Ward.
The Cardinal appeared headed for another score in the second quarter when Orchard stripped the ball from Hooper, and Utah recovered at its 28. Wilson guided the Utes to a 72-yard TD drive that he capped with a tying 2-yard keeper.
Antonio Gonzalez can be reached at: www.twitter.com/agonzalezAP
Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.