Penn State Offense Overcomes Slow Start, Routs Rutgers on Senior Day
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Christian Veilleux entered the game in relief of an injured Sean Clifford and tossed three touchdowns en route to a 28-0 Penn State win over Rutgers Saturday afternoon.
The day didn’t start particularly pretty for either side, with the two squads combining for 12 punts before either team could crack the scoreboard.
However, Penn State finally broke through, finding go-to man Jahan Dotson in the endzone for a 17-yard touchdown, opening the floodgates for the Nittany Lions’ offense.
A true freshman, Veilleux quickly got comfortable in place of Clifford and tacked on 235 yards through the air and added 36 more with his legs on the day.
He was able to do this all behind a patch-worked offensive line, as Mike Miranda did not start and both Caeden Wallace and Juice Scruggs left the game due to apparent injuries.
Fortunately for Penn State, the defense was stout while the offense struggled to get much of anything going.
While the offense continued to have drives sputter out, Jordan Stout continuously pinned the Scarlet Knights’ offense back with eight punts for 343 yards, including six inside the 20-yard line and two of more than 50 yards.
Rutgers could not move the ball all day, compiling only 116 yards of total offense through the first three quarters of play and only crossing midfield once — in the fourth quarter — but getting shut down inside the 10-yard line.
Come game’s end, Penn State surrendered just 165 yards to Noah Vedral and company, while also sacking him twice, carding eight tackles for loss and picking off one pass.
Redshirt freshman Malick Meiga put the game away early in the fourth quarter when his fellow Canadian native found him wide open, and he took a 67-yard touchdown to the house.
Dotson continued to etch his name in Penn State record books Saturday, climbing to second all-time in single-season receptions with 83, while also piecing together the sixth 1,000-yard season in program history.
He also became only the fifth Nittany Lion to haul in 10 receiving touchdowns in a single season with his second-quarter snag.
Zech Lambert is a fourth-year majoring in broadcast journalism. To contact him, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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