Hawkeyes use late surge to build 14-10 halftime lead
Iowa City, Iowa – It appeared MSU would walk into the locker room with a 10-point lead it could feel good about.
Then the Hawkeyes exploded for a quick pair of long touchdown drives on their final possessions of the half to take a 14-10 advantage.
MSU’s defense dominated much of the first half and found life on a big play from sophomore wide receiver Macgarrett Kings Jr.
The Spartans (3-1 overall, 0-0 Big Ten) forced three-and-outs on four of Iowa’s (4-1, 1-0) first five possessions, and the other ended with an interception from senior cornerback Darqueze Dennard.
MSU opened up with a three-and-out on its first possession, too, before squandering a pair of prime scoring chances on the next two drives.
Junior running back Jeremy Langford was stuffed on 4th-and-1 from the Iowa 24-yard line, and on the next possession following Dennard’s interception, freshman kicker Michael Geiger missed a 36-yard field goal.
Sophomore quarterback Connor Cook hooked up with Kings for a 46-yard touchdown, by far MSU’s longest play of the season, for a 10-0 lead.
It took Iowa six possessions to earn a first down, and once it did the Hawkeyes were rolling. Iowa quarterback Jake Rudock raised Cook and Kings by connecting on a 47-yard scoring strike to Damon Bullock.
With 1:10 left in the half, Rudock threw for his second touchdown, this time finding C.J. Fiedorowicz.
Cook went 13-for-22 passing for 153 yards while displaying some mobility and improved accuracy. Rudock has 143 yards on 12-of-15 passing.
The Spartans held stud running back Mark Weisman to just 9 yards, and the Hawkeyes’ team to 160.