IOWA CITY, Iowa — Iowa defensive lineman Anterio Thompson hadn’t etched his name in the box score. And in the third quarter in Iowa’s win over Western Michigan, he did so in a big way. Thompson swatted a punt through the back of the end zone, and it gave the Hawkeyes a spark they desperately needed.

For Thompson, this was a long time coming. He wanted to play for the Hawkeyes but ended up spending his freshman season at Iowa Western Community College.

“I knew I could impact this team in many ways,” Thompson said. “They ended up putting me on special teams. I just knew I can get back there.”

“I knew he made a point of really doing some good things behind the scenes,” head coach Kirk Ferentz said. “I think he’s got a really good future here. So to see him involved, and that’s probably not the position you would have figured him being opportunistic. And so that was great to see.”

The same could be said for freshman running back Kamari Moulton, who took two of his eight carries for touchdowns. He pointed up at the sky after his second run into the end zone.

“I was just glad to be there,” Moulton said. “I’m just doing it for my mom and my grandma. They passed, so I just know that they’re happy for me — and my dad.”

“He’s just such a positive guy that everyone enjoys being around him in the locker room,” Cade McNamara said. “For him to see some success today, we’re definitely happy that that happened.”

At the end of the game, on fourth and 1, the Hawkeyes elected to go for it up 24 points. The call was a handoff to sixth-string running back Max White, who plunged in for a score of his own.

“He’s my roommate,” Cooper DeJean said. “He’s a guy who, who comes in every single day and just works his tail off no matter the circumstance.”

“Max has been working for this his whole life and just to see that pay off and get that moment for him was awesome,” Mason Richman said. “For the twos and everybody fourth and one, you know we’re going for it. We’re not kicking a field goal.”