Penn State downs Iowa in Kinnick

The Hawkeye defense stepped up again, but Iowa's offense couldn't finish drives for the second week in a row.

Penn+State+WR+KJ+Hamler+scores+a+touchdown+during+the+Iowa+football+vs.+Penn+State+game+in+Kinnick+Stadium+on+Saturday%2C+Oct.+12%2C+2019.+The+Nittany+Lions+lead+the+Hawkeyes+7-6+at+halftime.+%28Katie+Goodale%2FThe+Daily+Iowan%29
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Penn State downs Iowa in Kinnick

Penn State WR KJ Hamler scores a touchdown during the Iowa football vs. Penn State game in Kinnick Stadium on Saturday, Oct. 12, 2019. The Nittany Lions lead the Hawkeyes 7-6 at halftime. (Katie Goodale/The Daily Iowan)

Penn State WR KJ Hamler scores a touchdown during the Iowa football vs. Penn State game in Kinnick Stadium on Saturday, Oct. 12, 2019. The Nittany Lions lead the Hawkeyes 7-6 at halftime. (Katie Goodale/The Daily Iowan)

Katie Goodale

Penn State WR KJ Hamler scores a touchdown during the Iowa football vs. Penn State game in Kinnick Stadium on Saturday, Oct. 12, 2019. The Nittany Lions lead the Hawkeyes 7-6 at halftime. (Katie Goodale/The Daily Iowan)

Katie Goodale

Katie Goodale

Penn State WR KJ Hamler scores a touchdown during the Iowa football vs. Penn State game in Kinnick Stadium on Saturday, Oct. 12, 2019. The Nittany Lions lead the Hawkeyes 7-6 at halftime. (Katie Goodale/The Daily Iowan)

Pete Ruden, Pregame Editor

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A week ago in Ann Arbor, Iowa’s defense held Michigan to 10 points, but the Hawkeye offense couldn’t get rolling, resulting in a 10-3 loss.

On Saturday in Kinnick, something similar happened. The Iowa defense kept Penn State to 17 points, but the offense failed to finish drives in the Hawkeyes’ 17-12 loss to the Nittany Lions.

Iowa made its way past Penn State’s 30-yard line three times, yet had to settle for two field goals and a missed attempt by Keith Duncan. It didn’t find the end zone until Nate Stanley hit Brandon Smith on a 33-yard pass with 2:31 remaining to make it a 17-12 game.

The Hawkeye defense, however, kept Penn State’s numbers low all game.

When the Nittany Lions were gifted with field position at Iowa’s 41 in the first quarter, Cedrick Lattimore, Brady Reiff, and Chauncey Golston stepped up for sacks on back-to-back plays to take Penn State out of field goal range.

After an Iowa fumble in the third quarter, Penn State gained possession inside the red zone and made its way to Iowa’s 1-yard line. From there, the Hawkeyes stuffed a run before two holding penalties forced the Nittany Lions into a third-and-goal from the 21. Penn State settled for a field goal.

Still, Iowa’s offense kept pace with Penn State’s. The Hawkeyes gained 356 yards on the day, compared to the Nittany Lions’ 304.

Penn State came up with seven tackles for loss, however, helping it to slow Iowa down on offense.

Golston and A.J. Epenesa both racked up a sack on the defensive side of the ball, while Reiff and Lattimore teamed up on a sack.

On offense, Stanley completed 25 of his 43 passes for 286 yards, a touchdown, and an interception.

Iowa’s receiving corps turned in a solid performance despite the loss. Brandon Smith recorded seven receptions for 86 yards and a touchdown. Nico Ragaini stepped up as a type of security blanket for Stanley, hauling in seven passes for 55 yards. Ihmir Smith-Marsette also showed his big-play ability, catching five passes for 72 yards — an average of 14.4 yards per reception.

Freshman running back Tyler Goodson led the way in Iowa’s run game, posting 35 yards on eight carries, including a 29-yard scamper in the second quarter.

Iowa will have a chance to bounce back on Oct. 19 when it hosts Purdue at 11 a.m.

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