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Resilient Hawkeyes keep pushing forward

IOWA CITY — Five issues to consider after the Iowa soccer staff’s 24-10 win over Wisconsin on Saturday:

1. The good

Resilient bunch, that soccer staff from Iowa.

From going 3-4 and coming off a 54-10 loss at Ohio State to profitable three straight video games and enjoying again into the Big Ten West Division title hunt, the Hawkeyes believed within the notion that they have been in a marathon and never take part in a dash and keep working.

“We didn’t put our heads down and look at the season as a failure. We kept working every day. We knew who we were as a team and as a defense and offense and our units just came together,” Kaevon advised Merriweather.

“We refuse to bow our heads. We want to keep going and see where it goes.”

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Tight finish Sam LaPorta stated what occurred on the sphere confirmed indicators it could present up in follow earlier than success in video games, however provides work must proceed.

“I don’t know if you could have told me a few weeks ago it was going to look like this, but we have two games left and we’re glad that we kind of have our destiny in our own hands,” LaPorta stated “Let’s see what we can do with it, game by game.”

2. The higher than good

Iowa’s defenses proceed to stay in uncommon air.

Only Illinois, holding Wisconsin to 208 yards in a 34-10 win, has held the Badgers to lower than the 227 yards the Hawkeye protection gave up on Saturday.

Wisconsin totaled simply 11 first downs — matching Iowa’s efficiency — and labored a lot of the sport behind the chains in opposition to an Iowa protection that sacked quarterback Graham Mertz 4 occasions and dropped the Badgers 9 occasions for losses.

The Hawkeyes restricted the Badgers to seven yards on 15 first-down carries on their method to lead Iowa to a thirteenth straight November win.

Iowa now permits 13.9 factors and 260.7 yards per sport, and for the primary time since a 1991 staff completed 10-1-1, the Hawkeyes have held seven opponents to 10 or fewer factors.

This Hawkeye protection is on observe to develop into Iowa’s greatest protection for the reason that Hawkeyes gave up 253.6 yards per sport in 1981, an 8-4 season that ended with a Big Ten title and a Rose Bowl look .

3. The kind constancy

While Iowa rallied simply 52 yards on the bottom Saturday, a long-term barometer held up Saturday.

The staff with probably the most yards has gained 20 of the final 22 video games between the Hawkeyes and the Badgers.

Iowa completed this, grounding Wisconsin for 51 yards.

“It’s will versus want. So if you’re willing to get out there and stop the run, good things can happen,” stated Iowa linebacker Jack Campbell. “You can’t really teach people that, and I think that’s a sign of a Phil Parker defense. He brings in people willing to come after him.”

Hawkeye freshman Kaleb Johnson was the game’s leading rusher, gaining 57 yards on 22 carries, while Badgers’ Braelon Allen totaled 40 yards on 17 carries and finished well below his season average of 109.9 yards per game.

Both teams struggled to gain traction, with Iowa hitting a season-low 1.2 yards in its 45 carries and Wisconsin gaining 1.6 yards in the 31 games it played football.

4. Winning ugly

After Iowa established a comfortable lead against Wisconsin, the Hawkeyes switched gears and focused solely on time management and risk-reduced football offensively, while keeping the defense doing their thing.

While that resulted in nine punts on Saturday — Tory Taylor averaged 43.4 yards on those attempts — it also pushed Iowa back into the winning circle as it won the Heartland Trophy for the second time in three years and seventh time in 17 games The winning bull was presented to the winner of the border rivalry.

“I do not thoughts telling you I considered it, particularly how we approached the second half,” said Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz. “Actually the same as in the last three weeks. You want to be smart in the second half and not put the guys in a really bad position.”

5. The manner forward

Saturday’s win marks Iowa’s tenth consecutive Bowl qualifier and twenty first in 22 years.

More importantly, three straight wins have put the Hawkeyes again within the title hunt within the Big Ten West division, the place 4 groups tied for first place with 4-3 information Sunday morning.

Illinois, Purdue and the Minnesota staff go to Iowa at 3 p.m. Saturday, becoming a member of Iowa within the blockade on the high of the division rating.

For a staff that got here on the sphere 3-1 in league play three weeks in the past, enjoying the ultimate two weeks of the season for a return journey to the Big Ten Championship Game is important.

But quarterback Spencer Petras thinks of nothing however the Golden Gophers.

“I think it’s a complete waste of time to think about it (an Indianapolis return) because we have a good Minnesota team and a good Nebraska team,” Petras stated.

“Considering where things were a few weeks ago, it’s great, but the second we put our focus on it, we’re doing ourselves a disservice. You can’t do that.”

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