Iowa City, IA (Sports Network) - Albert Young posted a pair of touchdown runs in the first quarter to help propel the 22nd-ranked Iowa Hawkeyes to a 45-21 win over Northern Iowa in non-conference action from Kinnick Stadium.
Young carried the ball 13 times for 97 yards for Iowa (2-1), which bounced back from a disappointing loss to Iowa State last week.
Also having a strong game for Iowa was quarterback Drew Tate, who connected on 15-of-18 passing for 247 yards and a pair of scores in the victory.
The Panthers (2-1), members of Division I-AA's Gateway Conference, were led by signal-caller Eric Sanders, who converted 19-of-29 pass attempts for 263 yards and three touchdowns, while being sacked twice and picked off one time in the team's first loss of the 2005 campaign.
Iowa and Young struck first on the afternoon, with the running back finding the end zone on a 10-yard run just under three minutes into the contest. He followed that up with a one-yard scoring run at the 7:04 mark of the first, and the Hawkeyes pushed their lead to 21-0 early in the second thanks to an interception returned for a touchdown from 18 yards out by Jovon Johnson.
Sanders stopped the bleeding for a moment with a 12-yard TD pass to Brian Cutright to cap an eight-play, 72-yard drive midway through the second.
But with the score 21-7, Iowa went right back to work as kicker Kyle Schlicher converted a 23-yard field goal, followed by an 11-yard scoring strike from Tate to Clinton Solomon to build the lead to 31-7 at the break. Solomon finished the day with four catches for 114 yards.
For the only score of the third quarter it was again Tate to Solomon, this time from 71 yards away, to push the Iowa advantage to 31 points.
Northern Iowa made the score somewhat more respectable as Sanders found Justin Surrency with a four-yard touchdown pass with 12:44 to play in the contest, followed by a 22-yard scoring connection with David Horne to cut the deficit to 38-21.
But with 30 seconds left in regulation, Damian Sims put the game out of reach with a 39-yard touchdown scamper, leaving Iowa with the 24-point home win.
Iowa averaged close to six yards per rushing attempt, generating 231 yards on the ground, compared to just 105 yards for UNI.
Iowa now leads the all-time series with the Panthers by a count of 13-1, the only loss being an 11-5 decision in the very first game played back in 1898...With the exception of that first meeting, every matchup has been played in Iowa City, which is where the Hawkeyes posted a 66-0 decision over UNI in the most recent contest in 1997...Iowa has now won 20 straight games at home, a Kinnick Stadium record, with the streak being the third longest among Division I-A schools behind only Boise State (25) and USC (21)...Iowa kicks off Big Ten action next weekend with a meeting against ninth-ranked Ohio State, which defeated San Diego State 27-6 on Saturday.
09/17 21:13:45 ET