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Penn State Football

Penn State Shakes off Slow Start, Dominates Second Half to Put Away Northwestern

James Franklin during pregame warmups before Penn State's matchup with Delaware.

EVANSTON, IL — It wasn’t pretty, but Penn State will get out of Evanston, Illinois with a win, beating Northwestern 41-13 Saturday at Ryan Field. 

The day didn’t get off to an optimal start for Penn State.

Nicholas Singleton fumbled the opening kickoff, setting up Northwestern at the Penn State 11.

But coordinator Manny Diaz’s defense held Northwestern to -4 yards, and Northwestern had to settle for a field goal, which put Penn State behind for the first time this season. Penn State tied the game later in the quarter on a chip shot field goal by Alex Felkins. 

Northwestern took the lead later in the second quarter. QB Ben Bryant ran in a one-yard sneak that finished a drive that featured a 3rd and 16 conversion.

Penn State tied the game before halftime on Trey Potts’ first rushing touchdown at PSU since transferring from Minnesota before the season.

PSU kept the momentum up in the second half. After the defense forced a three and out, Drew Allar completed Penn State’s second touchdown drive with a 1-yard sneak on 4th and goal to give Penn State its first lead of the day.  

Penn State added on later in the quarter with Felkins’ second field goal, this one from 46 yards. After stuffing a fake punt attempt, Penn State got the ball back with great field position at the Northwestern 34. It cashed in, scoring on a two-yard pass from Allar to Nicholas Singleton. 

Northwestern got a field goal in the fourth quarter to make it 27-13, but that’s as close as it got.

Penn State added two more scores, the final one coming from backup QB Beau Pribula after a Northwestern turnover set the Nittany Lions up with great field position. Pribula only needed one play, a strike to a wide open Trey Potts to make it 41-13.

Penn State has a bye week, then takes on UMass at Beaver Stadium Oct. 14. Kickoff is scheduled for 3:30. 

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