Penn State quarterback Trace McSorley throws during the 4th quarter of Iowa's game against Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Sept. 23. Penn State defeated Iowa 21-19 on a last second touchdown past. (Nick Rohlman/The Daily Iowan)

Penn State edges Iowa in Big Ten opener

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By Courtney Baumann

courtney-baumann@uiowa.edu

When referencing the Sept. 2 night game between Iowa and Penn State, ugly would be a good descriptor.

It could be used when talking about the 21-19 score Penn State won by, or the gross mismatch on the stat line, or just the way Iowa’s offense looked until the final quarter, or the very end of the game.

Penn State scored the game-winning touchdown as time expired on a fourth and 7, when Trace McSorley threw his only touchdown pass of the game to Juwan Johnson.

After getting flagged for unsportsmanlike conduct for rushing the field, Penn State took a knee on the extra-point attempt, and McSorley punted the ball, garnering plenty of hostility from Iowa fans.

“We’re disappointed with the loss. It’s going to hurt for a while,” Iowa head coach Kirk Ferentz said. “We’ll flip the page on Monday.”

Though the score looks relatively close on paper, the game did not seem like it was a difference of just one score at all.

The Nittany Lions gained 579 yards, 305 of which belonged to Saquon Barkley, but had trouble when it came to actually putting the ball in the end zone — a large credit to Iowa’s defense.

The defense, which did not perform well over the past two games, had a much better showing against the No. 4 Nittany Lions. The D was led by Josey Jewell, who finished the night with 16 tackles, 11 solo and 3 for a loss, 2 pass breakups, an interception, and a fumble recovery.

Though he tried, Jewell’s efforts were not enough.

RELATED: Barkley outshines Wadley & company

His leadership extends off the field, where he will make sure his teammates stay focused on the road ahead.

“The season’s not over. You have to look at it as the season’s still going,” Jewell said. “You can’t let this game ruin the rest of them. You have to have this game help the rest of them.”

While Penn State and Barkley put up large numbers on offense, Iowa did not until it came down to the wire.

In the fourth quarter, Iowa added 160 yards and 12 points to take the lead with just 1:42 left to play.

However, the first three quarters were a very different story. The Hawkeyes mustered 113 yards, and there was a flashback of the 2016 Penn State game because only 43 of them were on the ground. Iowa ended the game with just 82 rushing yards.

The halftime score, 7-5 Iowa, gave little insight to what that first half entailed.

It could have easily been a 5-0 game heading into the locker room, but a Jewell interception and 33-yard return with 43 seconds left put Iowa in Penn State territory for the first time.

Immediately following the turnover, quarterback Nate Stanley dropped a 21-yard pass into Nick Easley’s hands for the Hawkeyes’ first score of the day.

Stanley added two more touchdowns to hike his season total to 13 and completed just 13 passes but tallied 191 yards.

He once again showed poise while marching his team down the field with little more than two minutes left of the game to score in a necessary situation. He said it wasn’t too hard, because he was mentally prepared for what was to come.

“We have the mental game plan in mind,” Stanley said. “Obviously, we ran the right plays at the right times.”

Click below for more photos
A man picks up recyclables from a garbage can before the game between Iowa and Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017. (Ben Smith/The Daily Iowan)
Iowa fans walk to Kinnick stadium before the game between Iowa and Penn State on Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017. (Ben Smith/The Daily Iowan)
An Iowa fan leans against the Stead Family Children's Hospital sign before the game between Penn State and Iowa at Kinnick Stadium on Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017. (Ben Smith/The Daily Iowan)

CSC Event Staff prepares before the game between Iowa and Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017. (Ben Smith/The Daily Iowan)

Penn State players warm up on the field before the game between Iowa and Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017. (Ben Smith/The Daily Iowan)

The Hawkeyes take the field before their game against Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Sept. 23, 2017. (Nick Rohlman/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa fans cheer during Iowa's game against Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Sept. 23, 2017. (Nick Rohlman/The Daily Iowan)

Fans cheer during Iowa's game against Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Sept. 23, 2017. (Nick Rohlman/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa running back Akrum Wadley is tackled for a safety during Iowa's game against Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Sept. 23, 2017. (Nick Rohlman/The Daily Iowan)

An angry fan yells at a ref's call during the game between Iowa and Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017. (Ben Smith/The Daily Iowan)

Penn State running back Miles Sanders hurdles an Iowa defender during the game between Iowa and Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017. (Ben Smith/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa defensive end Parker Hesse forces a fumble on Penn State quarterback Trace McSorley during the game between Iowa and Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017. (Ben Smith/The Daily Iowan)
Iowa defensive end Anthony Nelson blocks a pass during the game between Iowa and Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017. (Ben Smith/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa defensive end AJ Epenesa bows after forcing an incomplete pass during Iowa's game against Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Sept. 23, 2017. (Nick Rohlman/The Daily Iowan)

Penn State tight end Mike Gesicki flips in the air after being tackled during the game between Iowa and Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017. (Ben Smith/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa line backer Josey Jewell celebrates an interception during the game between Iowa and Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017. (Ben Smith/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa quarterback Nathan Stanley throws a pass during the game between Iowa and Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017. (Ben Smith/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa wide receiver Nick Easley catches a touchdown pass during the game between Iowa and Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017. (Ben Smith/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa receiver Nick Easley celebrates after scoring a touchdown during Iowa's game against Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Sept. 23, 2017. (Nick Rohlman/The Daily Iowan)

An Iowa fan lifts a child into the air during Iowa's game against Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Sept. 23, 2017. (Nick Rohlman/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa running back Akrum Wadley stiff arms Penn State's Manny Bowen during the game between Iowa and Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017. (Ben Smith/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa running back Akrum Wadley breaks free for a touchdown run during Iowa's game against Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Sept. 23, 2017. (Nick Rohlman/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa running back Akrum Wadley dives into the end zone for Iowa's second touchdown during the game between Iowa and Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017. (Ben Smith/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa running back Akrum Wadley celebrates after a touchdown run during Iowa's game against Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Sept. 23, 2017. (Nick Rohlman/The Daily Iowan)

Penn State running back Saquon Barkley catches a pitch during the game between Iowa and Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017. (Ben Smith/The Daily Iowan)

Penn State's Saquon Barkley carries the ball during Iowa's game against Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Sept. 23, 2017. (Nick Rohlman/The Daily Iowan)

Penn State running back Saquon Barkley carries the ball during Iowa's game against Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Sept. 23, 2017. (Nick Rohlman/The Daily Iowan)

Penn State fans celebrate as Juwan Johnson catches the game winning pass during the game between Iowa and Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017. (Ben Smith/The Daily Iowan)

Penn State quarterback Trace McSorley throws during the 4th quarter of Iowa's game against Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Sept. 23, 2017. (Nick Rohlman/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa defensive back Josh Jackson breaks up a pass attempt in the end zone during Iowa's game against Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Sept. 23, 2017. (Nick Rohlman/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa Head Coach Kirk Farentz encourages the Hawkeye defense after a field goal during Iowa's game against Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Sept. 23, 2017. (Nick Rohlman/The Daily Iowan)

Penn State's Saquon Barkley hurdles a defender during Iowa's game against Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Sept. 23, 2017. (Nick Rohlman/The Daily Iowan)

Penn State quarterback Trace McSorley evades a tackle during Iowa's game against Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Sept. 23, 2017. (Nick Rohlman/The Daily Iowan)

Penn State comes up short of inches on fourth down during the game between Iowa and Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017. (Ben Smith/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa head coach Kirk Ferentz calls timeout during the game between Penn State and Iowa at Kinnick Stadium on Satruday, Sept. 23, 2017. (Ben Smith/The Daily Iowan)

Penn State quarterback Trace McSorley runs with the ball during Iowa's game against Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Sept. 23, 2017. (Nick Rohlman/The Daily Iowan)

Penn State safety Garrett Taylor (17) celebrates after Juwan Johnson catches the game-winning pass during the game between Iowa and Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017. (Ben Smith/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa quarterback Nathan Stanley watches the replay of a Penn State interception during the game between Iowa and Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017. (Ben Smith/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa quarterbacks coach Ken O'Keefe exchanges words with Penn State quarterback Trace McSorley after McSorley punted the ball in celebration after Iowa's game against Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Sept. 23, 2017. (Nick Rohlman/The Daily Iowan)

Penn State head coach James Franklin congratulates quarterback Trace McSorley after the game between Iowa and Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017. (Ben Smith/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa students react to the final square of Iowa's game against Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Sept. 23, 2017. (Nick Rohlman/The Daily Iowan)

An Iowa fan sulks after Penn State wins the game between Iowa and Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017. (Ben Smith/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa fans look on the field after Penn State wins the game winning drive during the game between Iowa and Penn State at Kinnick Stadium on Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017. (Ben Smith/The Daily Iowan)

 

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