No. 7 Iowa State avoided doing what it did to start the 2020 season, and was able to win it’s season-opener.
The Cyclones had a strong defensive showing, holding it’s opponent, Northern Iowa Panthers, the 21st ranked team at the FCS level to just 10 points, in a 16-10 victory Saturday.
Most of Iowa State’s points came from it’s kicking game, as Fordham transfer Andrew Mevis and senior Connor Assalley combined for three made field goals, with Mevis making one and Assalley making two.
UNI began the scoring in the game, with a Quan Hampton catching a pass over the middle and taking it 52 yards to the end zone to put UNI up 7-0 with four minutes left in the first quarter.
On the ensuing drive senior wide receiver made a diving catch for 39 yards, which helped set up a 35 yard field goal from Assalley, which gave Iowa State it’s first points of the season.
Iowa State got it’s first lead of the game after a two yard rushing touchdown from running back Breece Hall, which capped a 15 play and 59 yard drive.
The Panthers responded with a made field goal from 41 yards out by Matthew Cook, to tie things at 10 with 2:35 left in the first half.
Prior to the end of the first half, Mevis drilled a 40-yard field goal to give Iowa State a 13-10 lead heading into halftime.
Neither team threatened to score in the third quarter and Iowa State still held it’s 13-10 lead heading into the fourth quarter.
With a fourth and goal at UNI’s four yard line with just under six and a half minutes left, Iowa State elected to kick a chip shot field goal.
Assalley then made his second field goal of the game, to go up 16-10 with 6:18 left.
On the ensuing drive, Iowa State defensive back senior Datrone Young interception on a errant pass from UNI quarterback Will McElvain, with 2:05 left.
The Cyclones tried to run out the clock, but the Panthers made a third down stop to get the ball back with 1:02 left at their own 10 yard line.
The Panthers were able to move the ball into Cyclone territory, but couldn't get in the end zone on the final play, giving the Cyclones a 16-10 win.
In the second half, the Cyclones held the Panthers to no points, 85 yards and picked off two passes.
Iowa State quarterback Brock Purdy completed 21 out of 26 passes for 197 yards and threw no interceptions, but didn’t score a touchdown.
Hall led all rushers with 69 yards on 23 carries and scored one touchdown, while Hutchinson led all receivers with 88 yards on seven catches.
In total, Iowa State out gained Northern Iowa 333 to 275, and won the turnover battle 2-0.
Iowa State next’s host in-state rival Iowa, who just dismantled No. 17 Indiana, 34-6.