The No. 5 Hawkeye’s got off to a slow start Saturday afternoon, but were able to right the ship at halftime and came away with a hard fought 24-14 win over the Colorado State Rams (1-3).
The first quarter was wildly uneventful, with the no points scored. The Hawkeyes (4-0) were also outgained 83-60 by the Rams in that quarter.
They finally got things going offensively on the last play of the quarter with a 27-yard run by Tyler Goodson. A few plays later, Spencer Petras found freshman Keagan Johnson for 43-yard touchdown. It was his first catch as a Hawkeye.
From there it was all Rams. A 22-yard punt gave Colorado State the ball at the Hawkeyes’ 22 yard line. They quickly capitalized with a 10-yard touchdown run by quarterback Todd Centeio.
The next drive saw Petras find Johnson again for a big gain. This one was 49 yards. The freshman led all receivers with 92 yards.
But then came Petras’ biggest mistake of the season so far. He threw an interception at the Rams 14, which was returned to Iowa’s 23. Colorado State quickly turned that into points on a 2-yard touchdown pass from Centeio to Gary Williams, to take a 14-7 halftime lead.
The second half looked to be more of the same, until Jack Campbell recovered a fumble at the Rams’ 6 yard line. Tyrone Tracy took an handoff in for a touchdown on the very next play to tie it at 14.
A big punt return from Charlie Jones set Iowa up in great field position. Petras would find Sam LaPorta wide open down the middle of the field for 27-yard touchdown to give the Hawkeyes a 21-14 lead.
The Rams had 22 total yards in the third quarter, while the Hawkeyes scored 14 points.
There were a few more big plays from the Hawkeye defense including a stop on fourth and one. Caleb Shudak also added a field in the fourth quarter to bring the score to it’s final of 24-14.
Iowa now has a short week as they travel to Maryland to play the Terrapins on Friday.