BERKELEY -- Justin Forsett rushed for 132 yards and two touchdowns, and California snapped its three-game losing streak with a stellar defensive effort in a 20-17 victory over Washington State on Saturday night.
Forsett had a 44-yard scoring run with 2:42 to play for the Golden Bears (6-3, 3-3 Pac-10), and receiver Lavelle Hawkins clinched it by recovering an onside kick after Charles Dillon's 18-yard scoring catch and Washington State's 2-point conversion with 19 seconds left.
Cal lost its No. 2 ranking, fell out of the Top 25 and erased its championship hopes with losses to Oregon State, UCLA and Arizona State during a dispiriting three-week skid in October.
The losses didn't discourage the Bears' defense, which frustrated quarterback Alex Brink and kept the Cougars (3-6, 1-5) out of the end zone until Dillon's desperate TD reception.
Tight end Jed Collins then caught a 2-point conversion pass that was upheld by video review, but Hawkins easily grabbed the onside kick.
Brink passed for 306 yards -- 168 in the fourth quarter -- for Washington State, which lost for the fifth time in six games.
Forsett fumbled at the goal line to kill a second-half drive for Cal, but the senior made up for it with his impressive late sprint through traffic. The run also put Forsett over 1,000 yards rushing for the season, becoming coach Jeff Tedford's sixth 1,000-yard rusher in six seasons at Cal.
Michael Bumpus matched Washington State's career receptions record in the fourth quarter, tying 1960s star Hugh Campbell while making four receptions for 47 yards.