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No. 7/7 Penn State Football Uses Strong Second-Half to Surge Past West Virginia, 38-15

Courtesy of GoPSU Athletics

Quarterback Drew Allar shines with 325 yards and three touchdowns in first career start


UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – No. 7/7 Penn State Football (1-0) defeated West Virginia (0-1), 38-15, Saturday night in front of 110,747 fans, the fourth-largest crowd in Beaver Stadium history. The Nittany Lions outscored the Mountaineers, 24-8, in the second half to pull away for the season-opening victory. 


Drew Allar shined in his first game as Penn State’s starting quarterback, completing 21 of his 29 pass attempts and finishing with 325 passing yards, three touchdowns and no interceptions. Allar and wide receiver KeAndre Lambert-Smith proved to be a strong connection all night, including a 72-yard touchdown on Penn State’s opening possession of the game, the longest pass of Allar’s career. Lambert-Smith tallied 123 receiving yards and a career-best two touchdown grabs on four catches.


The Nittany Lions totaled 478 yards of offense (332 passing, 146 rushing) in the well-balanced attack. The dynamic running back duo of Nicholas Singleton and Kaytron Allen combined for 121 yards (70 for Singleton, 51 for Allen). Singleton scored a rushing touchdown in the second quarter, highlighting his solid day on the ground. Malik McClain gained 58 yards and caught a touchdown and Harrison Wallace III added 72 yards on a team-high seven receptions to round out the receiving corps. Quarterback Beau Pribula scored his first collegiate touchdown with a five-yard run in the final seconds of the fourth quarter.


The Penn State defense held West Virginia’s offense to just 15 points and 310 total yards, allowing the Mountaineers to convert only four of their 14 third-down attempts. The Nittany Lions made three fourth-down stops during the game and held West Virginia’s passing attack to just 167 yards through the air.


Linebackers Dominic DeLuca, Curtis Jacobs and Abdul Carter each recorded one sack apiece. Jacobs accumulated a team-best ten tackles, while linebacker Kobe King notched five. Zakee Wheatley, Jaylen Reed and Cam Miller made four stops each.




After the Nittany Lions won the coin toss and deferred to the second half, Penn State forced a West Virginia punt on the opening drive of the ball game. The Penn State offense stepped up right away, capping off its first offensive drive of the season with a 72-yard catch-and-run from Allar to Lambert-Smith. The four-play, 94-yard scoring drive lasted 1:56 and put the Nittany Lions up 7-0, a lead they would hold through the end of the opening quarter.


West Virginia got on the board at the 14:14 mark of the second quarter, tying the game 7-7. The Mountaineers scored on a one-yard touchdown run by CJ Donaldson. The scoring drive went 69 yards on nine plays, lasting 4:17.


The Nittany Lions responded immediately, constructing a 10-play, 81-yard touchdown drive to retake a 14-7 advantage. Singleton put the Nittany Lions up on a two-yard run with 9:10 to play in the opening half.


Penn State’s defense stalled the Mountaineers on their next trip down the field, thanks to DeLuca’s second career sack, the Nittany Lions’ first of the season. Neither team was able to score the rest of the way through the first half and the Nittany Lions went into the break up 14-7.


Lambert-Smith hauled in his second touchdown of the ballgame for the first score of the second half. The 12-yard score put Penn State up 21-7 with 8:36 left in the third quarter. The Nittany Lions’ scoring drive lasted 3:26 as the offense used seven plays to march 56 yards down the field into the end zone.


The Nittany Lion defense forced a turnover on downs on the next drive and the offense capitalized with a 25-yard field goal by Felkins on its next trip down the field, the result of a nine-play, 65-yard scoring drive. With the kick, Penn State went up 24-7 at the beginning of the fourth quarter.


Penn State’s offense scored two more touchdowns in the final frame to put the game out of reach for the Mountaineers. One came on a 25-yard touchdown pass to McClain and the final score was on Pribula’s first career touchdown, a five-yard quarterback keeper. The defense forced its third turnover on downs of the game, conceding just one more touchdown to West Virginia in the fourth quarter as the Nittany Lions cruised to the 38-15 victory.


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