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Penn State Football

Defense, Tight Ends Lead Penn State to Senior Day win over Michigan State

STATE COLLEGE, P.A.– As expected, Penn State won this year’s Battle for the Land Grant Trophy, beating Michigan State, 35-16, on Senior Day at Beaver Stadium. 

Penn State finishes the regular season 10-2, while Michigan State finishes with a losing record of 5-7. 

Coach James Franklin’s team came in as three-touchdown favorites, and although it didn’t look great at times, the win is what matters most. Penn State’s 10 wins this regular season come after winning just 11 games behind the previous two years.

The game was scoreless for most of the first quarter, but Penn State broke the deadlock with 40 seconds left on an 11-yard pass from Sean Clifford to Theo Johnson.

Penn State piled on in the second quarter. Again, Johnson caught a touchdown pass, but this one wasn’t from Clifford or any of Penn State’s quarterbacks. On a trick play, KeAndre Lambert-Smith hit Johnson, who completed a 48-yard scoring play and put Penn State up by two scores. 

Michigan State broke the shutout at the end of the first half on a 51-yard field goal by Jack Stone. Penn State led 14-3, at halftime. 

Penn State looked like they’d run away with it with 5:42 left in the third quarter, thanks to a 14-yard touchdown pass from Clifford to another tight end, Tyler Warren. Warren recovered a fumble on a Michigan State punt return moments earlier.

Michigan State kept fighting, scoring its first touchdown of the day on a 9-yard pass from Payton Thorne to Malik Carr. Michigan State then made things quite interesting with a touchdown on a 2-yard scamper by Throne early in the 4th quarter, pulling Sparty to within five. Michigan State did not convert on a 2-point attempt and would not score the rest of the night.

The Nittany Lions added two late touchdowns, both from Clifford. The first, a 12-yard pass to Nick Singleton and then a 35-yard strike to Lambert-Smith to close out the scoring.

Now, Penn State awaits its bowl game, which is yet to be determined. 

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