Sept. 13, 2014
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By DARREN MILLER
IOWA CITY, Iowa — After starting the season 2-for-5 kicking field goals against Northern Iowa and Ball State, University of Iowa junior Marshall Koehn sought the school’s all-time scoring leader for counsel.
That, of course, is Nate Kaeding, who scored 373 points from 2000-03, including 67-of-83 field goals.
“He gave me a few pointers to go over,” Koehn said. “All you can do is go back and keep kicking; keep your head up and be ready for your next opportunity. That’s what I tried doing.”
With the Hawkeyes trailing Iowa State 17-14 late in the fourth quarter Saturday, Koehn got the call. His 44-yard field goal tied the game and capped a 10-play, 56-yard scoring drive.
“It brings some confidence to me and as a unit it was pretty uplifting,” Koehn said. “Hopefully we can carry that into our next game.”
Koehn is the current scoring leader for the Hawkeyes with 13 points (3-of-6 field goals, 4-of-4 PATs). He averages 64.4 yards on 14 kickoffs and 11 have gone for touchbacks.
Although Koehn’s field goal tied the score, his counterpart from Iowa State — Cole Netten — converted a 42-yarder with 0:02 remaining to give the Cyclones a 20-17 win in the Iowa Corn Cy-Hawk Series matchup.
“It feels good to make the field goal, but at the same time we didn’t win the game,” Koehn said.“There is nothing easy about field goals, period. Both Marshall and Mick are first-year placekickers. You’re going to have to ride the roller coaster a little bit and hopefully that will be one that boosts his confidence. That was a great kick in a tight spot.”Kirk Ferentz
UI football coach
A week earlier during a 17-13 win over Ball State, Koehn missed from 35 yards, made a 25-yarder, and missed from 37 before being replaced by true freshman Mick Ellis. Ellis was 2-of-2 on point-after-touchdowns, but he missed a 29-yard field goal against the Cardinals.
Koehn said it was decided Tuesday at practice that he would handle field goals from the 25-yard line and beyond, Ellis would attempt any from the 25-yard line in toward the end zone. When Iowa attempted the field goal in the fourth quarter, the ball was on Iowa State’s 26.
“When I went to run out there, I thought I heard someone calling for Mick, but I still ran out there because time was running down,” Koehn said. “It wasn’t really how we planned it, but I thought it worked out.”
The holder for the Hawkeyes is junior punter Dillon Kidd. He noticed a key ingredient to the PAT-field goal team was absent moments before the attempt — the kicker.
“We trust both our kickers, so I just needed somebody to come out and kick the ball,” Kidd said.
UI head coach Kirk Ferentz knows first-time kickers experience their share of ups and downs.
“There is nothing easy about field goals, period,” Ferentz said. “Both Marshall and Mick are first-year placekickers. You’re going to have to ride the roller coaster a little bit and hopefully that will be one that boosts his confidence. That was a great kick in a tight spot.”
Koehn said it was “just another week” of practice. That week of practice paid off.
“I got back in there and kept kicking,” he said.
The Hawkeyes will play for the first time away from Kinnick Stadium on Sept. 20 when they take on Pittsburgh from the Atlantic Coast Conference. Kickoff is scheduled for 11 a.m. (CT).