Scores

Final

Michigan State 38

(3-0, 1-0 away)

Pittsburgh 23

(2-1, 1-1 home)

Coverage: ABC

12:00 PM ET, September 16, 2006

Heinz Field, Pittsburgh, PA

1 2 3 4 T
MSU 0 10 14 1438
PITT 10 0 0 1323

Top Performers

Passing: T. Palko (PITT) - 277 YDS, 2 TD, 2 INT

Rushing: J. Ringer (MSU) - 15 CAR, 156 YDS

Receiving: D. Kinder (PITT) - 9 REC, 121 YDS, 1 TD

On strength of Stanton's arm, legs, Michigan State now 3-0

PITTSBURGH (AP) -- Drew Stanton threw for two touchdowns and ran for 103 yards and another score to lead Michigan State to a 38-23 victory over Pittsburgh on Saturday.

The Panthers (2-1) took a 10-0 lead in the first quarter, but the Spartans (3-0) came back in the second quarter with 10 points of their own.

Stanton took charge in the second half, leading Michigan State on scoring drives of 75, 64, 83 and 99 yards. The final drive featured a 71-yard run by Javon Ringer.

Stanton completed 16-of-25 passes for 198 yards, and finished with 301 total yards. Ringer finished with 156 yards on 15 carries. Jehuu Caulcrick, who scored on a 1-yard run on the Spartans' last drive, had 63 yards on 16 carries.

When Michigan State wasn't grinding out the yards, Stanton was picking apart Pitt's secondary, or scrambling for key yards himself.

Pitt built its 10-0 lead on Conor Lee's 32-yard field goal and an 8-yard run by LaRod Stephens-Howling.

But Tyler Palko, who completed 7-of-9 for 65 yards in the first quarter, threw two incomplete passes and Stephens-Howling was stopped for a loss, forcing Pitt to punt.

The Spartans drove 63 yards in 13 plays on their next possession, but settled for a field goal.

After forcing Pitt to punt again, Michigan State drove 83 yards, keyed by a 21-yard run by Stanton and his 23-yard pass to Kerry Reed.

Stanton passed for just 40 yards in the first half, and completed just 5 of 13 passes, while rushing for 45.

Pitt had a chance to take the lead just before the half, when T.J. Porter returned the kickoff 53 yards to the Michigan State 47. But after Palko completed a first-down pass to Stephens-Howling with 13 seconds left, coach Dave Wannstedt opted not to use Pitt's last time out and Demond Williams intercepted Palko's hurried final pass of the half at the 2.

Palko led Pitt on a seven-play, 56-yard drive that ended with a 10-yard touchdown pass to Steve Buches with 2:52 remaining. The ensuing onside kick was recovered by Michigan State, but the Spartans fumbled the ball away with 53 seconds left, leading to another Palko touchdown pass to Derek Kinder on the game's final play.

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