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Lynch, Bishop help California overcome "Hail Mary"

Oct 21, 2006 - 11:09 PM BERKELEY, California (Ticker) -- Marshawn Lynch and Desmond Bishop ignored a potentially devastating play.

Lynch ran for the go-ahead score in overtime and Bishop ended the game with an interception as No. 11 California overcame a successful "Hail Mary" at the end of regulation to defeat Washington, 31-24, in a Pac-10 Conference thriller.

Lynch, who finished with 150 yards and two touchdowns on 21 carries despite battling a nagging ankle injury, gave Cal a 24-17 lead on a 17-yard TD run and a successful two-point conversion rush with 1:52 left in regulation.

"It was such a gutsy performance by Marshawn today," Cal coach Jeff Tedford said. "He put the offense on his back, and to make so many plays like he did today is just a phenomenal performance."

Carl Bonnell moved the Huskies to the Cal 40 with six seconds left. With just one shot at a tying touchdown, he lofted the ball to the front center of the end zone, where a trio of Golden Bears - including Bishop - tipped the ball right to receiver Marlon Wood, who grabbed it at about the 3 and just crossed the goal line before being tackled.

"It was desperation," Bonnell said. "Everybody's going deep and hope a guy can come up with the ball, and that's what happened. I scrambled a little bit and threw it up in the air. I didn't know who actually caught that ball, but I'm thankful they did."

"I was shocked that I actually caught it and just had to dive to get it over and take it into overtime," Wood said. "It feels good to catch it and score my first touchdown, but it didn't end the we wanted it to."

The Bears did not despair. Lynch ran for a 22-yard TD on the second play of overtime and Bishop - who wears the same No. 10 as Lynch - ended matters with an interception four plays later.

"Desmond, I thought, had a chance to put the game away with six seconds to go, to knock it down, and it just didn't happen that way, so it was very fitting for him to put the icing on the cake," Tedford said.

Nate Longshore completed 21-of-36 passes for 291 yards and an interception for Cal (7-1, 5-0 Pac-10), which has won seven straight games since a season-opening loss at Tennessee.

Bonnell went 17-of-31 for 284 yards and two TDs but was intercepted five times for the Huskies (4-4, 2-3), who were playing their first game since losing senior quarterback Isaiah Stanback to a season-ending foot injury.

"We played a good football team today and I think you could say that we played them toe-to-toe," Huskies coach Tyrone Willingham said. "We just didn't win."

Cal trailed, 13-10, when linebacker Zack Follett intercepted Bonnell at the Washington 37 late in the third quarter. But on 2nd-and-1 at the 14, Lynch was stuffed for no gain, and fullback Byron Storer and Lynch were stopped without picking up a yard on the next two plays, giving the Huskies the ball on downs.

On the second play of the fourth quarter, running back Louis Rankin ripped off a 44-yard rush to the 7 and Bonnell ran the ball into the end zone on the next play, giving Washington a 17-13 lead with 14:13 to play.

Cal pulled within 17-16 on a 20-yard field goal by Tom Schneider with 10:21 to go.

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