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Turning Point: Defense Holds, Nick Singleton Takes Care of the Rest

Singleton’s touchdown to put Penn State up by more than one score broke the dam.

Penn State v Auburn Photo by Michael Chang/Getty Images

Penn State came back out onto the field at Jordan-Hare Stadium in Auburn after halftime leading 14-6 but with the Tigers receiving the opening kickoff to start the second half. Although the defense had come up big in the first half by forcing Auburn to settle for a pair of field goals in the red zone, as well as coming up with two turnovers, the Tigers were merely one big or busted play from a touchdown and potentially tying the game on a two-point conversion.

The defense however, was determined to not allow the Tigers to even think they could string together something, as they held firm and forced a three-and-out after Adisa Isaac sacked T.J. Finley on third down to force Auburn to punt from near their own goal line. After Parker Washington fair-caught the punt at PSU’s own 42-yard line, the very first offensive play for the Lions saw Nick Singleton rip off a 53-yard run that set up PSU at first and goal inside Auburn’s five-yard line. A couple more runs later, Singleton reached the end zone and PSU went up 21-6, their first multi-score lead of the game.

It was a lead from which PSU would never look back from, as they added an additional ten points to take a 31-6 lead by the end of the third quarter, as the Auburn fans emptied out of the stadium before the fourth quarter even began. The opening series of the second half for both the defense and offense helped set the tone for the rest of the game and showed that PSU was not going to let its foot off the gas pedal until the clock showed three zeroes at the end of the fourth quarter, which makes it this week’s turning point.