The No. 4 Iowa State Cyclones defeated the Virginia Tech Hokies 99-77 on Friday night in the first semifinal matchup of the Emerald Coast Classic. The ISU offense was red-hot from the floor all night, ending with 57% shooting from the floor (37-64) and 61% from 3-point range (13-21).
It took a bit for the Cyclones to start firing on all cylinders. With 10:23 left in the first half, it was only a two point game with Iowa State holding a 16-14 advantage. However, from that point until halftime, ISU outscored Virginia Tech 36-16 to build a 22 point lead heading into the locker room.
The scoring didn't slow down in the second half. Steve Prohm's squad flashed brilliant spacing, ball movement and shot selection to maintain a sizeable lead throughout the second period. The closest the Hokies got the lead down to was 16 points with just under five minutes left in the game. Unfortunately for them, Iowa State's pace and deadeye shooting from all over the court proved too much to handle.
Even the announcers were aroused by ISU's performance, as seen (and heard) in the clip below.
Jameel McKay led the way for the Cyclones, scoring 23 points and adding 8 rebounds. The senior center made 10-16 shots from the floor on the night. The rest of the ISU starting lineup finished in double figures scoring as well (Abdel Nader 16, Georges Niang 14, Monte Morris 14, Naz Mitrou-Long 12).
Hallice Cooke and Matt Thomas both provided a nice spark off the bench, scoring 9 and 6 points, respectively. Morris was his usual efficient self, dishing out 7 assists with zero turnovers. Meanwhile, Niang, a preseason All-American, chipped in 7 rebounds and 6 assists to go along with his 14 points.
Iowa State's next game will be the championship game of the Emerald Coast Classic tomorrow night at 6 p.m. The opponent will be the winner of the UAB-Illinois game. You can once again see the televised game on CBS Sports Network.