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STATE COLLEGE, PA.
Some of the record 32,221 football fans in Beaver Stadium began filing out before the final whistle blew. They knew they had just seen one of the hardest-hitting games in the nation. They also knew that it was over. Undefeated West Virginia had made the touchdown that upset Penn State, 19 to 14.
The Mountaineers opened with just the kind of play Penn State feared—a driving, yard-gaining game topped by an unexpected pass which put them on the Penn State four-yard line less than five minutes after kick-off. That scoring threat was fumbled away, but Mountaineer Quarterback Freddy Wyant led his team back to the one-yard line from which he plunged for a touchdown. The conversion failed, leaving West Virginia with a shaky 6 to 0 lead.
From that point on, the play was as tough as any, anywhere. Each team fumbled four times, but never out of negligence. Tacklers were hitting hard, almost paralyzing ball carriers' arms.
Two West Virginia linemen, Tackle Bruce Bosley and Guard Gene (Beef) Lamone, probably had as much to do with the victory as did Wyant, whose quarterbacking was superb. But it must have been incredibly tiring. Mountaineer Coach Art Lewis, lacking the depth of Penn State, had to play six linemen and his quarterback a full 60 minutes.
For a time it looked as if the Nittany Lions, who get their name from the valley in which Penn State lies, would come through. They scored twice in the second period, once on a pass from Quarterback Don Bailey to Halfback Ron Younker, again on a ground drive which ended with an eight-yard touchdown run by Halfback Lenny Moore. Penn State led 14 to 6, but the comfortable margin lasted only a quarter.
West Virginia took hold once more in the fourth period with a 68-yard running and passing attack which Wyant himself climaxed with a 15-yard touchdown run. Eight plays later, with less than four minutes to go, Halfback Dick Nicholson took a pitch-out from Wyant and ran 40 yards to score the winning touchdown.
If West Virginia can remain even two-thirds as keyed up as it was Saturday, Nicholson's touchdown probably will be remembered as the point at which the Mountaineers started their march to a New Year's Day bowl.