Last Time Out
The 23rd ranked Lady Cyclones put on a great showing in Fort Worth against TCU, winning in convincing fashion, 91-68. Ashley Joens did her thing with 33 points and 11 boards and Kristin Scott added 15 points to go along with 5 rebounds in Bill Fennelly’s season debut as coach.
About South Carolina
The Gamecocks come into the game ranked #1 in the country, although they suffered their first loss of the season earlier in the week to 8th ranked NC State. South Carolina was riding a 29 game win streak before shooting woes deflated the Gamecocks. The Cyclones have never met SC before, but hold a 2-2 record in the Big 12/SEC Challenge.
Coming into the season, South Carolina was widely regarded as the best team in the country, which still hasn’t been disproven by any means. The team really just has not meshed together quite yet, having just one senior has shown to lack leadership according to head coach Dawn Staley, “Uncoachable, untamable, just not listening, just selfish play.”. She found herself questioning who would take on the role of being a leader this season.
With wins over Charleston, South Dakota, and Gonzaga, the Gamecocks really did not show signs that they would be anything less than the top team in the country. The recent loss to NC State, however, quickly has everyone within the program wondering if they have what it takes after a worst case scenario game.
Opponent Player to Watch
Junior guard, Destanni Henderson, could be that leader that SC is looking for. She averages nearly 18 points per game to lead the Gamecocks, as well as 3 assists and 1.5 steals per game. Henderson nearly willed the team to a come-from-behind victory in that NC State game, she plays hard, quick, and physical on defense. She is likely the Gamecocks number one scoring option right now, so expect her to be active on both ends of the floor.
What Will Happen
Iowa State has never beaten a #1 ranked team, 0-7 all-time to be exact, but that could change this Sunday. South Carolina is very well coached and have been in this position before so I do not expect them to start to panic after one early season loss. With that being said, the Cyclones are coming off a great performance and if they continue that, Hilton Magic might make an appearance. The Gamecocks are not the best offensive team, so it’s a game to 60.
Clones in fo’.
ISU - 66
South Carolina - 62
1 - Aubrey Joens plays more minutes than at least one starter.
2 - Rae Johnson has 6+ assists off the bench.
3 - Bill Fennelly pumps up the limited crowd.
The Matchup: Iowa State (2-1, 1-0 Big 12) vs. South Carolina (3-1, 0-0 SEC)
Where: Ames, Iowa - Hilton Coliseum
When: Sunday, December 6th, 11:00 am (CST).
Radio: Cyclone Radio Network/Learfield Talent: Noah Wolf, Jamie Steyer
TV: ESPNU Talent: Mark Neely, Brooke Weisbrod
Live Stats: cyclonestats.com