Late turnover seals Iowa’s sixth straight Heroes Game victory over Nebraska

The Hawkeyes defeated the Cornhuskers 26-20 at Kinnick Stadium.

Iowa+quarterback+Spencer+Petras+looks+to+pass+during+a+football+game+between+Iowa+and+Nebraska+at+Kinnick+Stadium+on+Friday%2C+Nov.+27%2C+2020.+%28Shivansh+Ahuja%2FThe+Daily+Iowan%29

Shivansh Ahuja

Iowa quarterback Spencer Petras looks to pass during a football game between Iowa and Nebraska at Kinnick Stadium on Friday, Nov. 27, 2020. (Shivansh Ahuja/The Daily Iowan)

Robert Read, Pregame Editor


The No. 24 Iowa football team defeated Nebraska 26-20 at Kinnick Stadium on Black Friday for the team’s six consecutive victory in the Heroes Game.

The Hawkeyes have now won four games in a row after starting the season 0-2.

Iowa opened the scoring with a Keith Duncan field goal on its first drive of the game to go up 3-0 with 12:06 remaining in the first quarter. It was the first of four Duncan field goals on the day. At the end of the first quarter, the Hawkeye extended their lead.

Off of play action, quarterback Spencer Petras found receiver Tyrone Tracy running wide open across the end zone and connected with him for a touchdown. Iowa led 10-0 at the end of the first 15 minutes of the play.

Nebraska got on the board with two field goals in the second quarter, and Duncan tacked on another for Iowa. With 29 seconds remaining before halftime, Nebraska quarterback Adrian Martinez — who rotated with Luke McCaffrey throughout the game — ran in for a one yard touchdown to tie the game at 13 going into the half.

The Cornhuskers went on an eight-play, 70-yard scoring touchdown drive to open the second half and go up 20-13. The Hawkeyes responded and running back Mekhi Sargent ran in for a two-yard touchdown to cap off a 14-play, 66-yard drive to tie the game.

Two Duncan field goals early in the fourth quarter pushed Iowa’s lead to 26-20.

Duncan’s fifth field goal attempt of the game was no good from 51-yards out with only minutes remaining in the game, giving Nebraska a chance for a game-winning drive. But that didn’t happen.

After an 18-yard completion moved Nebraska onto Iowa’s side of the field, Martinez was sacked by Chauncey Golston and the ball popped up into the air. Zach VanValkenburg recovered it in the air to seal Iowa’s victory.

Petras finished 18-of-30 passing for 193 yards, a touchdown, and an interception. Goodson ran for 111 yards on 30 carries.

Defensively, defensive tackle Daviyon Nixon tallied three tackles for loss and a sack, while Nick Niemann led Iowa with 12 tackles.

The Hawkeyes improve to 4-2 on the season and compete against Illinois in Champaign next week.

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