Courier Staff Writer
IOWA CITY — Iowa provided themselves with numerous opportunities to jump ahead of No. 24 Wisconsin Saturday by a comfortable early margin.
Instead, the Hawkeyes managed to open only a 6-0 lead, allowing the Badgers to make a comeback with one big play in the second quarter.
The third quarter, however, all the breaks went Wisconsin’s way. The end result is a 14-9 lead for the 24th-ranked Badgers and a freshman back-up quarterback left to rally the Hawkeyes in the fourth.
After using a 44-yard touchdown pass to Jacob Pedersen to gain the lead for the first time late in the first half, the Badgers used a big defensive play to completely change the contest. Jake Rudock’s throw out of his own end zone was intercepted by Darius Hillary, setting up an immediate 20-yard touchdown pass by Badger quarterback Joel Stave to Jared Abbrederis as Wisconsin opened a 14-9 lead after three quarters at Kinnick Stadium.
On that interception, Rudock was hit and appeared to injure his knee. The Hawkeyes turned to freshman backup quarterback C.J. Beathard to try and lift Iowa in the fourth quarter.
Beathard, with a large amount of help from running back Jordan Canzari, did lead Iowa on a scoring drive following the Badger touchdown. A 43-yard run by Canzari set up the Hawkeyes on Wisconsin’s 17, but five yards gained on the next three plays led to Mike Meyer’s third field goal of the day to pull the Hawkeyes within a touchdown at 14-9.
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