EUGENE, Ore. — The University of Wisconsin football team was unable to rally for one final scoring drive as the ball changed possession on downs near midfield and seventh-ranked Oregon extended its home winning streak to 21 games with a 31-28 victory over the Badgers at Autzen Stadium.
Oregon quarterback Joey Harrington, who completed 22 of 47 passes and threw for two touchdowns, leaped over a pile from one yard out to score the game-winning touchdown with 4:03 remaining.
After the ensuing kickoff, UW quarterback Jim Sorgi, who completed 16 of 32 passes for 231 yards and two touchdowns, fumbled the ball, giving the Ducks control on the Badgers’ 33 yard line. The Wisconsin defense forced Oregon to punt, giving the Badgers one last chance.
Sorgi completed a 36-yard reception to junior Lee Evans to give Wisconsin control at the Oregon 47, but four incomplete passes ended the Badgers’ hopes for victory as the Ducks regained possession with 58 seconds remaining. Evans had his second-straight 100-yard game, with eight catches for a career-high 168 yards.
Wisconsin, which fell to 1-1 with the loss, overcame an early 10-0 deficit and battled through six lead changes in the second half. Sorgi found senior Nick Davis across the middle for an 18-yard strike early in the second quarter and then put the Badgers on top with a 13-yard reception to freshman wideout Darrin Charles on Wisconsin’s first possession of the second half.
After a Harrington pass to Justin Peelle gave Oregon its second touchdown of the night, Wisconsin retaliated on the ground as freshman Anthony Davis put the Badgers ahead 21-17 with a 69-yard scamper down the center of the field. Davis had 13 rushes for 130 yards in the contest, his second 100-yard rushing effort in as many games with Wisconsin.
The teams again traded touchdowns, with the Duck’s Maurice Morris and Sorgi each scoring one-yard runs before Harrington’s dive gave Oregon its final margin of victory.
With 16 yards on three punt returns, Nick Davis became Wisconsin’s career leader in punt-return yardage. Davis finished the game with 786 career punt-return yards, eclipsing Troy Vincent’s (1988-91) total of 773 yards. Wisconsin returns home to host Fresno State at 11:10 a.m. Sept. 8 at Camp Randall Stadium.