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Iowa football vs. Kent State: Box score, highlights, more from Hawkeyes’ 30-7 win
No. 5 Hawkeyes now 3-0 after beating Golden Flashes
The Iowa Hawkeyes earned their 300th win at Kinnick Stadium since its 1929 opening, beating Kent State 30-7 to improve to 3-0 this season.
Tyler Goodson rushed for a career-high 153 yards and scored three touchdowns for No. 5 Iowa (3-0).
» Box score: No. 5 Iowa 30, Kent State 7
» Recap: Iowa overcomes offensive woes to defeat Kent State
» Hlas column: Iowa’s depth rises to the surface in a big way
» Game Report: Turning point, key numbers, notes and more
» Feature: Tyler Goodson’s career day propels Iowa offense through critiques
» Gallery: Iowa vs. Kent State photos
4th Quarter updates
Final: Iowa 30, Kent State 7
The script for the 2021 Hawkeyes so far had been the defense making game-changing plays and the offense coming along for the ride. This week, the defense was at it again while the offense started to put things together.
Iowa sustained longer drives against Kent State, scoring touchdowns on drives of 55, 95, 80 and 64 yards. Goodson scored three of those on runs of 46, 35 and 2 yards.
The Hawkeyes rushed for a season-high 228 yards.
“(Goodson’s) a good player and we certainly do better when he’s going,” Iowa Coach Kirk Ferentz told BTN. “I think the guys up front did a little better job, played hard and certainly Tyler made some of that on his own as well.”
Spencer Petras and Sam LaPorta connected for the other on a 5-yard pass.
Petras finished 25 of 36 for 209 yards.
“If anybody’s watching, we’ll probably be (ranked) about 15th this week, based on what I saw,” Ferentz said. “The good news is we can get a lot better in a lot of areas. We still have a lot of things to clean up.”
Iowa’s defense contributed the first points of the game with a safety from Lukas Van Ness and Zack VanValkenburg, plus made a game-changing play when Riley Moss recovered a fumble forced by Jestin Jacobs after Kent State drove to the Iowa 1, down 16-7 in the third quarter.
The Hawkeyes sacked Kent State QB Dustin Crum seven times, with Van Ness and Joe Evans both tallying two.
“The guys up front I thought really did a good job,” Ferentz said. “We gave up a couple big plays, just bad technique and then our eyes weren’t always where they needed to be, so we’ve got some things to clean up, for sure. I thought the guys up front played with a lot of energy. That’s a young group and happy about that. That really helped us in the second half.”
Iowa 30, Kent State 7 | 4:07 4th
Iowa’s offense had one more big play it and Tyler Goodson made one more to the end zone.
Spencer Petras found a wide-open Nico Ragaini for a 48-yard gain to the Kent State 2, then Goodson completed his hat trick with a 2-yard TD run.
3rd Quarter updates
Iowa 23, Kent State 7 | 0:32 3rd
Tyler Goodson once again made a big play on the left side of the field to find the end zone for the second time Saturday.
The Iowa running back found a hole, made a man miss and went 35 yards for a touchdown as the Hawkeyes took advantage of the Kent State turnover.
The run gave Goodson 137 yards on 16 attempts in the game. It was an 11-play, 80-yard drive that took up 6:05.
Iowa 16, Kent State 7 | 6:37 3rd
Kent State was on the doorstep of the end zone, about to cut the lead to three, when the Iowa defense made another big-time play.
Bryan Bradford took a handoff from the 1, was hit by Jestin Jacobs and fumbled into the end zone, where Riley Moss picked up the ball to maintain the Hawkeyes’ lead.
This all came after a questionable overturned call of a Tyrone Tracy Jr. third-down catch forced Iowa to punt the ball back to the Golden Flashes instead of keeping its drive going.
2nd Quarter updates
Iowa 16, Kent State 7 | 0:19 2nd
Oh, just your standard 20-play, 95-yard touchdown drive in 8:38 to end the half.
For a Hawkeye offense that has been struggling early in the season, including this game, that was a major development that gives the team a two-score lead entering the break.
Spencer Petras delievered a 5-yard TD pass to Sam LaPorta. Petras was 9 for 11 on the drive for 67 yards. Arland Bruce IV and Gavin Williams made their first career catches on the drive.
“We really needed that,” Iowa Coach Kirk Ferentz told BTN at halftime. “We were sputtering on offense. They’ve given us some tough looks so that really helped us after they responded on their side of the ball.”
Iowa 9, Kent State 7 | 8:57 2nd
A promising Iowa drive ended at the Kent State 22 when Ivory Kelly-Martin fumbled with 58 seconds remaining in the first quarter.
Meanwhile, Keshunn Abram reeled in three straight catches, including a 45-yarder, and already has 129 yards receiving on five catches. But the Golden Flashes’ latest drive stalled at the Iowa 34 and they punted on fourth-and-16.
1st Quarter updates
Iowa 9, Kent State 7 | 5:00 1st
Kent State came right back with its passing attack after a three-and-out and safety on its first two possessions.
Keshunn Abram was the guy on this drive, getting behind Riley Moss for a 48-yard reception to the Iowa 27, then reeling in a 23-yard touchdown pass from Dustin Crum.
This was a lightning-fast drive of 75 yards in five plays.
Iowa 9, Kent State 0 | 6:34 1st
The Iowa offense gained just 26 yards on its first two drives, but the safety gave the Hawkeyes some life.
After Charlie Jones returned the free kick 25 yards to the Iowa 45, Iowa needed just three plays to find the end zone. Tyler Goodson did the honors, racing into the open field on a misdirection pitch play for a 46-yard touchdown run.
Iowa 2, Kent State 0 | 8:03 1st
For the third straight week, Iowa’s defense has scored.
This time, though, it’s a safety.
A high snap on second-and-3 from the Kent State 15 resulted in the ball rolling into the end zone, where quarterback Dustin Crum was brought down by Lukas Van Ness and Zack VanValkenburg.
Iowa began the season ranked No. 18, but probably has the best resume in the country so far thanks to two double-digit wins against a tough early schedule, Indiana and Iowa State. Suddenly the Hawkeyes have gone from hype-free to No. 5 in the AP poll.
But for all the success, the offense hasn’t been great. Or good. Will a game against a Mid-American Conference team give the Hawkeyes a chance to get going on that side of the ball?
The Gazette’s Leah Vann thinks so.
“My guess is (Tyler) Goodson is going to pop off and (Spencer) Petras will start throwing it more in the second half for reps,” she wrote, predicting a 30-0 Iowa win.
» Picks: More Kent State-Iowa predictions
The Iowa defense has been outstanding and will have to be on its game again against a Kent State team that lives up to its Golden Flashes name offensively.
Another big reason for the September success: special teams. Returner Charlie Jones has played a big role, and is finding a bigger role on offense too. Leah wrote a must-read feature on Jones this week.
More Kent State-Iowa pregame coverage:
» Iowa vs. Kent State Fun Facts: Colin Farrell edition
» Prideful Iowa defense has special bond between old and new players
» Iowa needs young offensive line to help increase production
» 5 Kent State players to watch against Iowa
How to watch Iowa vs. Kent State
Time: 2:40 p.m. CT
Live stream: FoxSports.com
Radio: Hawkeye Radio Network
Listen online: TuneIn