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GAMEDAY College Football

Ohio State 44, Penn State 31

(AP Photo/Barry Reeger)

By RALPH D. RUSSO
AP College Football Writer

STATE COLLEGE, Pa. - J.T. Tuimoloau had a strip sack to set up No. 2 Ohio State for a separation-score in the fourth quarter and then a pick-6 to cap a spectacular performance by the defensive end as the Buckeyes erased a fourth-quarter deficit to beat No. 13 Penn State 44-31.

C.J. Stroud found his groove for Ohio State in the fourth quarter and finished with 354 yards passing as the Buckeyes (8-0, 5-0 Big Ten) ran their winning streak in the rivalry to six in a row - none by more than 13 points.

As has often been the case when these teams get together lately, the Buckeyes were a double-digit favorite and the Nittany Lions (6-2, 3-2) played them tough.

In this case, though, Penn State didn't just hang around. The Nittany Lions went up 21-16 with 9:26 remaining in the fourth quarter on a tough 1-yard touchdown run by Kaytron Allen on fourth down.

Ohio State outscored Penn State 28-3 the rest of the way, with Tuimoloau providing the key play after the Buckeyes went up 23-21.

Tuimoloau also recovered the fumble after swiping the ball from Sean Clifford with 8:26 left in the fourth quarter. One play later, Stroud connected with Cade Stover, who rumbled through the Penn State defense for a 24-yard touchdown to make it 30-21.

Tuimoloau also had his first career interception in the first quarter, a tipped pass at the line of scrimmage that resulted in Ohio State's first interception of the game and another sack.

For his final act, Tuimoloau beat his block, reached up and grabbed Clifford's short pass attempt at the 14-yard line and cruised into the end zone to make it 44-24.

Clifford threw for 371 yards and three touchdowns, but committed four turnovers.

TreVeyon Henderson scored twice in Ohio State's fourth-quarter outburst, including a 41-yard run 35 seconds after Penn State took the lead. He added a 7-yard touchdown run with 2:52 left to make it 37-24.

Clifford, the sixth-year quarterback, whose up and down play has had some Nittany Lions fans clamoring to see more of five-star freshman Drew Allar, found success after the early turnovers.

Parker Washington broke free of two Ohio State tacklers and sprinted 58 yards for a score to cut the Ohio State lead to 10-7 in the second quarter and awaken a lunchtime crowd of more than 108,000 at Beaver Stadium.

Clifford hooked up with KeAndre Smith-Lambert down the middle for a 23-yard touchdown to give Penn State a 14-10 lead that prompted a singalong to "Sweet Caroline" from the "striped-out" fans.

A visit from Ohio State is usually a White Out game for Penn State, played at night. This time it was a big nooner with Fox in town and the Nittany Lions coming off a White Out romp last week against Minnesota.

Two weeks removed from getting pummeled on the road by Michigan, Penn State put up a four-quarter fight against the Buckeyes.

THE TAKEAWAY

Ohio State: A few days before the first College Football Playoff rankings are released, the Buckeyes faced their toughest test of the season so far - by far - and passed. Only a major upset over the next three weeks will keep the Buckeyes from rolling into the Michigan finale unbeaten.

Penn State: The Nittany Lions limped out of the Big House after allowing more than 400 yards rushing, but their athletic defense seemed to be a better match-up for the Buckeyes. At least for a while. Penn State heads into the final month of the season still hoping for a 10-win season, but with a Big Ten title out of reach.


Scoring Summary
First Quarter OhioStPSU
OhioSt FG 9:47 Noah Ruggles 38 yard field goal 3 0
OhioSt TD 2:48 Miyan Williams 4 yard TD run (Noah Ruggles Extra Point) 10 0
Second Quarter OhioStPSU
PSU TD 11:13 Parker Washington 58 yard TD pass from Sean Clifford (Jake Pinegar Extra Point) 10 7
PSU TD 6:50 KeAndre Lambert-Smith 23 yard TD pass from Sean Clifford (Jake Pinegar Extra Point) 10 14
OhioSt FG 3:14 Noah Ruggles 37 yard field goal 13 14
Third Quarter OhioStPSU
OhioSt FG 0:10 Noah Ruggles 40 yard field goal 16 14
Fourth Quarter OhioStPSU
PSU TD 9:26 Kaytron Allen 1 yard TD run (Jake Pinegar Extra Point) 16 21
OhioSt TD 8:51 TreVeyon Henderson 41 yard TD run (Noah Ruggles Extra Point) 23 21
OhioSt TD 8:17 Cade Stover 24 yard TD pass from C.J. Stroud (Noah Ruggles Extra Point) 30 21
PSU FG 5:49 Jake Pinegar 44 yard field goal 30 24
OhioSt TD 2:52 TreVeyon Henderson 7 yard TD run (Noah Ruggles Extra Point) 37 24
OhioSt TD 2:42 J.T. Tuimoloau 14 yard interception return for TD (Noah Ruggles Extra Point) 44 24
PSU TD 1:12 Kaytron Allen 5 yard TD pass from Sean Clifford (Jake Pinegar Extra Point) 44 31
Team Stats
  Ohio State Penn State
First downs 21 22
  Rushing 3 5
  Passing 17 17
  Penalty 1 0
3rd Down Efficiency 4-12, 33% 6-16, 38%
4th down efficiency 1-1, 100% 3-4, 75%
Rushes-Yards 26-98 33-111
Passing Yards 354 371
Return Yards 52 43
Completions-Attempts-Int 26-34-0 32-47-3
Sacks-Yards Lost 2-13 3-18
Punts 3 3
Fumbles Lost 1-0 3-1
Penalties - Yards 8-50 5-45
Ohio State Passing
Player Cmp Att Yds TDs Int
C. Stroud 26 33 354 1 0
Penn State Passing
Player Cmp Att Yds TDs Int
S. Clifford 32 47 371 3 3
Ohio State Rushing
Player Carries Yds Avg TDs
T. Henderson 16 78 4.9 2
M. Williams 2 9 4.5 1
M. Rossi 1 8 8.0 0
C. Stroud 6 5 0.8 0
Penn State Rushing
Player Carries Yds Avg TDs
K. Allen 12 76 6.3 1
N. Singleton 14 45 3.2 0
S. Clifford 7 -10 -1.4 0
Ohio State Receiving
Player Rec Yds Avg TDs
M. Harrison Jr. 10 185 18.5 0
C. Stover 6 78 13.0 1
E. Egbuka 6 53 8.8 0
J. Fleming 2 27 13.5 0
M. Rossi 1 16 16.0 0
T. Henderson 1 -5 -5.0 0
Penn State Receiving
Player Rec Yds Avg TDs
P. Washington 11 179 16.3 1
K. Lambert-Smith 2 58 29.0 1
T. Johnson 2 57 28.5 0
M. Tinsley 5 24 4.8 0
O. Evans 2 14 7.0 0
B. Strange 4 13 3.3 0
K. Allen 2 13 6.5 1
N. Singleton 1 6 6.0 0
T. Warren 1 4 4.0 0
H. Wallace III 1 4 4.0 0
S. Clifford 1 -1 -1.0 0
Ohio State Interceptions
Player Int Yards
J. Tuimoloau 2 16
Z. Harrison 1 2
Penn State Interceptions
Player Int Yards
Ohio State Punting
Player Punts Yards Avg
J. Mirco 3 156 52.0
Penn State Punting
Player Punts Yards Avg
B. Amor 3 134 44.7
Ohio State Punt Returns
Player Ret Yards Average
E. Egbuka 1 8 8.0
Penn State Punt Returns
Player Ret Yards Average
P. Washington 2 4 2.0
Ohio State Kick Returns
Player Ret Yards Average
X. Johnson 1 26 26.0
Penn State Kick Returns
Player Ret Yards Average
O. Evans 1 17 17.0
D. Hardy 1 22 22.0
Ohio State Missed FG
Player Length
N. Ruggles 53
Penn State Missed FG
Player Length




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