first_imgFor the second straight season, the Wisconsin football team dropped its Big Ten opener.This year, the Badgers (3-2, 0-1 Big Ten) fell to Iowa (5-0, 1-0) 10-6 in a defensive battle Saturday afternoon at Camp Randall Stadium.Despite a dominant defensive performance from Joe Schobert, an Iowa touchdown and field goal in the first half provided all of the scoring the Hawkeyes would need. Running back Jordan Canzeri paced the Iowa offense with 125 yards on 26 carries.Rafael Gaglianone connected on two 46-yard field goals, but missed a 42-yard attempt to account for all of Wisconsin’s scoring.Wisconsin quarterback Joel Stave turned the ball over four times, throwing two interceptions and losing two fumbles, while throwing for 234 yards (21-for-38).Here’s a breakdown of the game:Iowa Player of the Game: Desmond KingKing picked off Stave twice, one setting the Iowa offense up for points and the other squashing a lengthy Wisconsin drive.The junior cornerback’s first interception came on a Stave throw into traffic. The ball wound up right in King’s hands and he returned it 15 yards down the right sideline to the Wisconsin 31-yard line.The Hawkeyes would score the game’s only touchdown on the ensuing offensive possession, which ultimately turned out to be the difference on the scoreboard.On their first possession of the second half, the Badgers had driven 40 yards downfield when King came up big again. On a 3rd-and-12 from the Iowa 32, Stave floated a pass toward an open Jordan Frederick, who had beaten King. But Stave underthrew the ball and King came down with it at the 11-yard line.King added nine tackles and two pass breakups as well.Wisconsin Player of the Game: Joe SchobertThe offense may not have done him any favors, but Schobert still almost found a way to single-handedly win Saturday’s game for the Badgers.Schobert was all over the field, sacking Iowa quarterback C.J. Beathard three times, including a pivotal sack-fumble (which he also recovered) in the fourth quarterthat shifted momentum to the Badgers for a moment.Of Schobert’s eight tackles (five solo, three assisted), three were for a loss. He also had five quarterback hurries.Football: Badgers fall short in defensive battle with HawkeyesIn a game dominated by defensive play, the Wisconsin football team fell just short in their Big Ten opener Saturday Read…Turning PointThe Wisconsin offense was on the verge of rewarding the defense for its superb performance.A pass interference call placed the Badgers on the one-yard line. All that needed to happen was for Taiwan Deal to plunge into the end zone like he has done four times already this season and Wisconsin would take a late 13-10 lead.That was the play call, too. But as Stave dropped back to hand the ball off, center Dan Voltz’s foot tripped Stave, and as Stave fell to the turf, he tried to get the ball to his running back.Instead, Iowa defensive lineman’s Faith Ekakitie’s pounced on the loose ball and the game’s momentum shifted back toward the Hawkeyes, where it would remain until the final whistle.When You Knew It Was OverThe defense gave the Badgers yet another chance to win. Wisconsin took over at its own 47 with 2:45 remaining.A completion to Reggie Love brought the Badgers to the Iowa 16, and with the Badgers facing a 4th-and-2, Iowa took a timeout with 40 seconds on the clock.Stave’s final pass attempt fell incomplete near the far sideline, intended for Troy Fumagalli, ending any opportunity for any late-game heroics.QuotableVince Biegel on how disappointing the loss was from a defensive standpoint:“We didn’t get the job done on defense today. They scored too many points. They scored more points than our offense. It’s a loss.”Iowa head coach Kirk Ferentz on Joe Schobert:“Schobert, boy, I’ll tell you, he’s a football player. That doesn’t surprise me. He played like that last year. Last year, I thought he was a great football player and he’s playing at a really high level right now.”UW head coach Paul Chryst on offensive struggles, particularly the running game:“I think it’s everyone on offense … I thought today there were some good runs, but we haven’t been consistent, and so I think we all have to own it. We all want to own it, quite honestly.”Joel Stave on the defense’s play:“Obviously it’s disappointing. I thought the defense did a tremendous job continuing to battle, giving us opportunities. We just have to come away with something.”Tyler Marz on offensive miscues: “I think we kind of beat ourselves and beat ourselves quite a bit this game.”last_img