GAMEDAY College Football

Michigan State 35, Western Michigan 13

By LARRY LAGE
AP Sports Writer

EAST LANSING, Mich. - Payton Thorne capped three straight drives with touchdown passes in the first half and threw for a fourth score in the final quarter to help No. 15 Michigan State pull away and beat Western Michigan 35-13.

The Spartans played well in spurts, but also struggled for long stretches against the Broncos in the opener. After taking a 21-3 lead early in the second quarter, they allowed an average Mid-American Conference team to pull within eight points late in the third quarter.

Michigan State was fortunate Thorne's uneven performance included four touchdowns to match his career high. He finished 12 of 24 for 233 yards with an interception.

Wisconsin transfer Jalen Berger ran for a career-high 120 yards and a touchdown that gave the Spartans a 28-13 lead with 6:28 remaining. Thorne's fourth touchdown, a 43-yard pass to Tre Mosley, on the next drive ended any doubt about the outcome.

After a slow start, Thorne threw a short pass to freshman Germie Bernard, whose speed turned the play into a 44-yard touchdown late in the first quarter. Illinois transfer Daniel Barker used only his right hand to catch a 13-yard pass for a score and Keon Coleman ran under a 41-yard pass to put Michigan State ahead 21-3 early in the second quarter.

Western Michigan pulled within 11 points midway through the third quarter, when it converted a fourth-and-1 at its 42 and Sean Tyler ran for a 4-yard touchdown a snap after picking up 45 yards on the ground.

The Broncos made it 21-13 late in the third when Palmer Domschke made a 42-yard kick, but they couldn't make enough plays on both sides of the ball in the fourth quarter and fell to 1-30 against ranked teams.

INJURY REPORT

Michigan State's defense took a hit in the first half, losing linebacker Darius Snow and safety Xavier Henderson after both appeared to have injured their right legs.

THE TAKEAWAY

Western Michigan: Jack Salopek had an encouraging first start, completing 21 of 36 passes for 193 yards and running for 61 yards on a draw.

Michigan State: If Snow and Henderson are injured significantly, that will hurt the team's chances to improve a defense that ranked last against the pass in FBS in 2021.


Scoring Summary
First Quarter WestMIMSU
WestMI FG 6:31 Palmer Domschke 27 yard field goal 3 0
MSU TD 4:37 Germie Bernard 44 yard TD pass from Payton Thorne (Jack Stone Extra Point) 3 7
Second Quarter WestMIMSU
MSU TD 14:55 Daniel Barker 13 yard TD pass from Payton Thorne (Jack Stone Extra Point) 3 14
MSU TD 12:26 Keon Coleman 41 yard TD pass from Payton Thorne (Jack Stone Extra Point) 3 21
Third Quarter WestMIMSU
WestMI TD 8:20 Sean Tyler 4 yard TD run (Palmer Domschke Extra Point) 10 21
WestMI FG 0:49 Palmer Domschke 42 yard field goal 13 21
Fourth Quarter WestMIMSU
MSU TD 6:28 Jalen Berger 1 yard TD run (Jack Stone Extra Point) 13 28
MSU TD 4:07 Tre Mosley 43 yard TD pass from Payton Thorne (Jack Stone Extra Point) 13 35
Team Stats
  Western Michigan Michigan State
First downs 19 20
  Rushing 6 9
  Passing 11 8
  Penalty 2 3
3rd Down Efficiency 6-18, 33% 3-10, 30%
4th down efficiency 2-3, 67% 1-1, 100%
Rushes-Yards 37-141 32-197
Passing Yards 193 233
Return Yards 66 66
Completions-Attempts-Int 21-36-0 12-24-1
Sacks-Yards Lost 7-29 1-7
Punts 6 4
Fumbles Lost 2-2 1-1
Penalties - Yards 8-76 2-30
Western Michigan Passing
Player Cmp Att Yds TDs Int
J. Salopek 21 36 193 0 0
Michigan State Passing
Player Cmp Att Yds TDs Int
P. Thorne 12 24 233 4 1
Western Michigan Rushing
Player Carries Yds Avg TDs
S. Tyler 13 68 5.2 1
J. Salopek 11 36 3.3 0
L. Jefferson 9 31 3.4 0
Z. Abdus-Salaam 4 6 1.5 0
Michigan State Rushing
Player Carries Yds Avg TDs
J. Berger 16 120 7.5 1
J. Broussard 10 54 5.4 0
P. Thorne 4 22 5.5 0
D. Barker 2 1 0.5 0
Western Michigan Receiving
Player Rec Yds Avg TDs
J. Galloway 4 70 17.5 0
C. Crooms 5 41 8.2 0
B. Bosma 5 35 7.0 0
J. Burgett 1 21 21.0 0
A. Abbott 2 20 10.0 0
K. Mack 1 9 9.0 0
L. Jefferson 1 1 1.0 0
S. Tyler 2 -4 -2.0 0
Michigan State Receiving
Player Rec Yds Avg TDs
K. Coleman 4 84 21.0 1
T. Mosley 2 51 25.5 1
G. Bernard 1 44 44.0 1
J. Reed 2 31 15.5 0
D. Barker 1 13 13.0 1
M. Carr 1 6 6.0 0
T. Hunt 1 4 4.0 0
Western Michigan Interceptions
Player Int Yards
K. Lovely 1 2
Michigan State Interceptions
Player Int Yards
Western Michigan Punting
Player Punts Yards Avg
N. Mihalic 6 246 41.0
Michigan State Punting
Player Punts Yards Avg
B. Baringer 4 202 50.5
Western Michigan Punt Returns
Player Ret Yards Average
Z. Abdus-Salaam 1 10 10.0
Michigan State Punt Returns
Player Ret Yards Average
J. Reed 2 21 10.5
Western Michigan Kick Returns
Player Ret Yards Average
S. Tyler 3 54 18.0
Michigan State Kick Returns
Player Ret Yards Average
M. Carr 1 7 7.0
J. Broussard 1 18 18.0
J. Reed 1 20 20.0
Western Michigan Missed FG
Player Length
Michigan State Missed FG
Player Length
J. Stone 44




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