Now both right placekicking feet are ice cold.
There is a confidence crisis going on right now with the Washington Huskies’ kicking game — one that hit a new low Saturday in No. 5 UW’s 13-7 loss to Arizona State at Sun Devil Stadium.
Backup kicker Van Soderberg, the redshirt freshman from Olympia who played at Capital High School, apparently won the job this week in practice. He was called upon to try two third-quarter field goals.
At the time Soderberg lined up a 27-yard attempt on the UW’s first drive of the second half, the Huskies badly needed points. They trailed, 13-0.
But Soderberg’s kick barely missed left of the goalpost with 8:10 remaining in the third quarter.
“That is hard, because they (Soderberg and senior Tristan Vizcaino) can make those in their sleep. They do every day in practice, over and over, without question,” Huskies coach Chris Petersen said. “That is hard on them. Again, we’ve got to play better red-zone football and not come down to that. It is never really one part, or one person, for sure.”
If Petersen was frustrated with his team’s inability to score inside the ASU 10-yard line the first time, it got to him the second time.
Still trailing 13-0, the Huskies faced a fourth-and-2 from the Sun Devils’ 4 with 1:10 to go in the third quarter.
Petersen opted for a field-goal try instead of going for a touchdown.
“We wanted to get on the scoreboard and get something going,” Petersen said
This time, Soderberg kicked from 21 yards out. And this time, the attempt was pushed to the right, clanking off the upright.
“Van can make those like clockwork in practice,” Petersen said.
So far, both UW kickers are a combined 4-of-11 on field goals. The last time the Huskies missed seven field goals in a season was 2010 when Erik Powell made 13 of 20 kicks.
“We don’t want to settle for field goals anyway,” Petersen said.
DEFENSE DOES ITS JOB
Except for giving up an opening touchdowns, and missing on a couple of tackles, the UW defense did enough to keep the Huskies in the game.
That unit was on the field for nearly 35 minutes. On 73 ASU offensive plays, the Huskies gave up an average of 3.9 yards per play.
“The guys played hard,” UW co-defensive coordinator Pete Kwiatkowski said. “At the end of the day, there are some plays out there we could have made that could have been the difference. It is a team sport; one side doesn’t win at all, one side doesn’t lose it all.”
ADAMS, MILLER INJURED IN LOSS
Not only did the Huskies lose the game, they might have lost to of their key starters for a while.
Left tackle Trey Adams went down after a Myles Gaskin run late in the first quarter, and immediately grabbed at his right leg as UW athletic trainers rushed on the field. He was helped off the field, and never returned. Andrew Kirkland played the rest of the game at left tackle.
And on the Sun Devil’s game-clinching completion with less than two minutes to go, cornerback Jordan Miller also suffered a serious injury. His left leg was immediately placed in a cast and he was carted off the field.
With no touchdown passes, UW quarterback Jake Browning remains at 73 for his career, two behind Keith Price for the all-time record. ... It was ASU’s first win against a top-five opponent since 1996 when the Sun Devils shut out Nebraska, 19-0. ... Retiring UW play-by-play radio announcer Bob Rondeau was honored at halftime in the press box with a congratulatory cake from ASU athletic officials.