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Cyclones sack UNI in season opener, 31-7

AMES — Iowa State (1-0) ended its two-year losing streak against FCS opponents in an impressive fashion on Saturday. In front of a sold out (61,500) and good looking Jack Trice Stadium, Iowa State’s defense led the way in a convincing 31-7 victory over the in-state rival Panthers.

In a 3-4 base set, Iowa State’s shiny new defensive line sacked UNI’s quarterbacks an impressive six times in the game. Senior defensive end Dale Pierson recorded 3.5 sacks of his own, the most of a Cyclone since Jason Berryman in the Houston Bowl back in 2005.

Leading 10-7 at halftime, it took Iowa State’s offense a while to hit its stride. It was in the third quarter when the passing game that many anticipated heading into the season finally appeared. Sam Richardson connected with Dondre Daley for a 36-yard touchdown run with 10:05 to play in the quarter. He later hit Allen Lazard for 13 yards with 1:03 to play in the third.

Richardson ended the game with a 22-for-29, 233 yards and two touchdown stat line without scoring an interception. Tyler Brown led the Cyclones in rushing on 11 attempts for 68 yards. 

Walk-on Trever Ryen capped off the night with an 81-yard punt return for a touchdown late in the fourth quarter.

After going down 7-0 in the second quarter, Iowa State’s 31 points were all unanswered. 

Up next, Iowa State will host the University of Iowa next week (3:30 p.m. kick on FOX). The Hawkeyes took care of business in their opener Saturday by defeating Illinois State 31-14.

Check out CycloneFanatic.com later tonight and all day Sunday for more coverage of Saturday’s victory.