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Nittany Lions Dump Golden Flash, 24-0

Written by: on Sunday, September 19th, 2010

WesternPAFootball Writer

UNIVERSITY PARK — Maybe it was a little hangover from the Alabama game, or maybe it was just the fact that Kent State might be a little better than some had thought.

But regardless of what the reason might have been, in the end, it was another methodical 24-0 shutout that Penn State threw at the Golden Flashes Saturday in front of a Beaver Stadium crowd of 100,610.

So did you see any improvement on the team as a whole?

“I think we made some,“ said PSU coach Joe Paterno. “We were a little more sound defensively. We hustled to the ball a little bit better and I thought the tackling overall was a little bit better. We still have a long way to go. I think if we keep working at it, we will end up being a decent football team, but we have a ways to go yet.”

Although not happy with the loss, Kent State head coach Doug Martin was quite satisfied with the overall effort from his squad.

“”We played a really good football team today,” said Martin. “I was really proud of our effort, especially on the defensive side of the ball. We played about as well as we could play and we put our defense in some tough situations with turnovers early in the game. Those turnovers were really the difference. To start the second half, we did not capitalize on anything. Again, I felt our kids played with a lot of passion and we played a really good football team. I do not know if there are many times we would have a chance to beat that team with the talent level they have. They are really well coached.”

KSU had to play error-free game if they had any chance to stay with the Lions. That was taken care of on its first possession with an interception of a Spencer Keith pass by D‘Anton Lynn.

“That (interception) set the tone,” said defensive coordinator Tom Bradley. “He (D’Anton Lynn) did a great job baiting him on the throw and did a real good job handling that smash route for the interception.”

“We were in a two-deep,” said Lynn. “I got up and I pressed one and then I turned my head and I was just reading two. I saw him coming out in the flat and I don’t think the quarterback expected me to come out. It looked like he threw it right to me.”

Taking advantage of the Golden Flash mistake, Robert Bolden scored his first career touchdown with 9:06 remaining in the opening period on a 1-yard quarterback sneak on the 10th play of the drive that covered 45 yards.

Following a KSU punt to the Lion 30, the ‘Nits put their offensive unit in motion one more time.

Five plays later, Evan Royster ripped into the end zone from three yards out for the touchdown. The big play on the drive was the first one when Bolden connected with Derek Moye for 55 yards to the Golden Flash 15. For Moye, it was his longest career reception as Nittany Lion.

Following Penn State’s second score, the Golden Flash defense stiffened through the middle two quarters. So after those two scores, did you make any adjustments?

“No, it was just the speed of the game,” said Martin. “They have some fast guys and early on our guys were just trying to get acclimated to the speed difference and what was going on, but I thought our defense really settled in well. We did not make any adjustments on either side of the ball, but we ran the ball much better than we have been and that was a positive. Again, we just could not make the big play for the touchdown.”

Following the two PSU touchdowns, the two teams combined to play the game of field position for the next 24 minutes until Collin Wagner made it 17-0 when he split the uprights for a 27-yard field goal with just less than 10 minutes left in the third period.

After a combined three possessions by the two teams produced nothing, Kent State punted to their own 48.

On the first play following the boot, Bolden found Devon Smith wide open for a 48-yard scoring pass. Wagner’s PAT completed the scoring in the game at 24-0.

“It was just an over-the-top post,” explained Smith. “I got behind the cornerback, I was open and I was able to adjust to the short pass. Then I made a guy miss and got to the end zone.”

With Royster having problems hanging onto the ball while trying to get untracked, Stephfon Green came off the bench to lead the Lion ground attack that netted 162 yards. Green finished with 59 yards on 11 carries.

Stephon Morris led the defensive unit with nine stops, while Michael Mauti and Chris Colasanti were next in nine with seven tackles each. Derrick Thomas, who joined Lynn in the interception department, was also credited with a pair of pass breakups.

Now 2-1, the Lions will be right back in the friendly confines of Beaver Stadium Saturday when they roll out the red carpet to the Temple Owls. Kickoff for that fray is set for 3:30 p.m.

DID YOU KNOW: Five Big 10 teams are ranked in the Top 25. That is the first time that has happened since the 2008 season…..Going into Saturday’s games, seven of the Big 120 teams are still unbeaten…..Michigan’s Denard Robinson became the first Big 10 player to surpass 200 yards passing and rushing in one game. In the Wolverines win over Notre Dame, Robinson rushed for 258 yards while passing for another 244.….Big 10 rushers produced eight more 100-yard outings, including six repeat performances from the first week of the season…..Northwestern’s Dan Persa boasts the best pass efficiency, not only in the Big 10, but in the nation as well…..The Big 10 conference leads the nation in four statistical categories. It boasts half of the Top 10 rushers.

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