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Oregon State football players have started an online petition to keep interim head coach Cory Hall permanently.

Better, but …

The Oregon State University football team lost a game it easily could have won Thursday night.

Admirable, but …

The Beavers played with enthusiasm and focus but could only score 14 points offensively.

Progress yes, but …

With the game on the line and a chance to run out the clock OSU made a costly turnover that allowed No. 20 Stanford to score the winning touchdown with 20 seconds left in a 15-14 thriller before 30,912 at Reser Stadium. The Beavers are now 0-2 under interim head coach Cory Hall, who took over after Gary Andersen left the program after an Oct. 7 loss to USC left the team 1-5.

On the other hand …

The Cardinal (6-2 overall and 5-1 in the Pac-12 North) played without injured star running back Bryce Love. Backup Cameron Scarlett from Portland rushed for 72 yards on 17 carries in place of Love (who averages 198), but the Stanford offense, which came into the game averaging 38.1 points per contest, was lethargic and could not score a touchdown for the first 59 minutes and 40 seconds.

When the pressure was on …

OSU led 14-9 heading to the fourth quarter, but on its final four drives went punt, punt, punt, lost fumble – and the last three drives produced two first downs and 14 yards. And the fumble – the second lost by the Beavers – led to a 40-yard Stanford march to the winning TD, a drive that included a 25-yard pass from Keller Chryst to Kaden Smith on 4th-and-10.

Statistics are for losers, but …

The last time the Beavers gave up 15 points or less and lost was a 13-6 home defeat to WSU in 2007. The last time the OSU scored 14 or less and won was the 10-7 season-opening win in 2012 against Wisconsin. The Beavs outgained Stanford 264-222 and again, as they did in the Colorado game, showed a bit of a flair offensively, using the wildcat formation, using misdirection and even throwing a backward pass to 315-pound offensive lineman Fred Lauina, who rumbled 8 yards on a play that helped set up the team’s first score.

But in the final analysis …

When you allow just 15 points you should win … but when you score only 14 yourself you almost never do. OSU is 1-7 overall and 1-5 in the Pac-12 North. Stanford dodged a bullet and the Beavers, well, the Beavers were better, but …

Coming up ...

I will have some thoughts on the Beavers and the box office on Friday.

Cheers!

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Contact reporter James Day at jim.day@gazettetimes.com or 541-758-9542. Follow at Twitter.com/jameshday or gazettetimes.com/blogs/jim-day.

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