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Wisconsin vs. Iowa: Badgers outlast Hawkeyes

Another physical, grinding battle goes to the Badgers.

NCAA Football: Wisconsin at Iowa Reese Strickland-USA TODAY Sports

It was yet another physical installment of the Wisconsin-Iowa rivalry, and for the sixth straight game between these two programs, the road team came away with the victory.

The No. 10 Wisconsin Badgers defeated the Iowa Hawkeyes 17-9 at Kinnick Stadium on Saturday afternoon, taking the Heartland Trophy back to Madison.

Wisconsin out-gained Iowa 423-236 yards on the afternoon. Redshirt freshman Alex Hornibrook completed 11 of 19 passes for 197 yards. Senior running back Corey Clement rushed for 134 yards on 35 carries and a touchdown, including a key 34-yard run in the fourth quarter on a 3rd-and-1 to extend a drive in a one-score game. Eight different players caught passes for the Badgers.

The defense was up to the task once again in Iowa City. Inside linebacker Jack Cichy recorded 10 tackles on the afternoon, but it appeared his left shoulder was injured at the end of the first half. He continued to play in the second half for a while thereafter before Ryan Connelly took over. It should be something to watch heading into next week, though Badger247’s Evan Flood reported Cichy isn’t worried about missing next week.

Outside linebacker Garret Dooley stepped up huge, recording 2.5 tackles for loss and 0.5 sacks. Redshirt junior T.J. Watt had 1.5 sacks and five tackles opposite Dooley and a returning Vince Biegel. Inside linebacker T.J. Edwards and strong safety D’Cota Dixon registered seven and six tackles, respectively.

Iowa quarterback C.J. Beathard was held to 153 yards on 17-of-33 passing, and an Iowa rushing attack that averaged 180 yards per game coming in was grounded to 83 at a 3.1 yards-per-carry average.

Wisconsin did not allow a touchdown defensively, and held Iowa to 2-of-13 on third-down conversions.

UW was only up 7-6 at halftime due to some blown opportunities. Senior quarterback Bart Houston came in for one series and delivered, going 3-for-3 on that drive that ended with a 17-yard touchdown pass to Troy Fumagalli.

Despite gaining nearly 250 yards of offense and having the ball for over 18 minutes, mistakes costs the Badgers 10 points.

On their first offensive series, senior placekicker Andrew Endicott missed a 32-yard chip shot wide right. Then during their last offensive drive of the first half, Clement fumbled at the goal line and Iowa recovered. That led to a Hawkeyes field goal that swung what could have been a 14-3 game to 7-6 (17-6 if you count Endicott’s miss).

Despite Iowa pulling to within an eight-point game with around a minute left in the game, Wisconsin allowed the onside kick to go out of bounds and preserve the victory.

Wisconsin faces what could be its third conference opponent ranked in the top 10 next Saturday, as No. 8 Nebraska comes to Camp Randall for a primetime tilt.