IOWA CITY — Iowa did a lot right in the first half. It held the No. 17 Cornhuskers to three points and only one drive of consequence. The Hawkeyes’ defense and special teams came up with fumble recoveries. The offense moved the ball into Nebraska territory several times, running 27 plays on the Huskers’ side of the field. But the score was just 7-3, with quarterback James Vandenberg’s 1-yard sneak with 28 seconds left in the first quarter giving Iowa its first lead since 10:58 of the fourth quarter at Indiana. That’s a span of 85:32 and more than two games. Iowa played the “phone booth” game well, clearing the way for running back Mark Weisman to gain 55 yards on 16 carries. The Huskers gained just 92 yards on 29 plays. Vandenberg fueled Iowa’s TD drive with a 25-yard completion to tight end C.J. Feidorowicz who caught four passes for 42 yards in the first half. Iowa just didn’t accept the help the Huskers handed to it. Ameer Abdullah fumbled a punt and Iowa corner Micah Hyde recovered to give Iowa a first down at its 41. On fourth-and-2 from Nebraska’s 39, Weisman was mobbed after Nebraska won the push up front. On its next drive, the Huskers moved to Iowa’s 48, but there quarterback Taylor Martinez and fullback Andy Janovich tangled on a handoff and Iowa DT Louis Trinca-Pasat recovered to set up Iowa at its 48. These drives went into a northern wind that whipped into Kinnick Stadium with 15 to 25 mph gusts. Vandenberg had a ball hang up in the air that would’ve been a TD pass to tight end Zach Derby. Huskers safety Daimion Stafford swooped in and broke it up. From there, this drive died a slow death and Iowa ended up punting from Nebraska’s 31. Iowa had one more chance when Hyde returned a punt 29 yards to UNL’s 42. This drive reached the 19-yard line. After a time out on third-and-9, Iowa was hit with an illegal substitution penalty with too many men in the huddle. This pushed the Hawkeyes back 5 yards. Mike Meyer’s 42-yard field goal attempt into that wind drifted wide left. Iowa left a lot on the table in the first half.