Iowa State enters today's contest against Texas Tech at 23-4, 12-3 in Big 12 with a chance to set up a conference championship game Monday against Baylor. First, they have to beat the Red Raiders who have been struggling as of late, losing 10 of their last 11 games. Morgan Kane remains out of the starting lineup, as Bill Fennelly goes with Emily Ryan, Lexi Donarski, Maggie Espenmiller-McGraw, Ashley Joens, and Beatriz Jordao.
Lexi Donarski and Ashley Joens get the Clonies going early, each scoring 5 points in the first 5 minutes of action, Emily Ryan assisting on 3 of the first 5 field goals. The second five minutes of the first quarter was a different story, as Texas Tech forced some ISU turnovers and turned them into points to make it a 20-18 Iowa State lead after one.
Both teams struggled in the 2nd quarter, each squad scoring just a bucket apiece in the first 4 minutes. Cyclones then got a spark from the Joens sisters, Ashley Joens hitting back-to-back threes and Aubrey gets one of her own to get Iowa State going on offense. Texas Tech was able to respond and keep it a close game going into the break, Iowa State leading just 33-31 at the half.
Texas Tech grabs their first lead a minute into the second half at 35-33, but Ashley Joens puts the Clones back on top with a three of her own that sparked some ISU offense. Iowa State made 4 of 5 field goals that ignited a 21-8 run that gave them a 14 point lead by the end of the third quarter.
Iowa State was able to build and nurse the lead until the final buzzer, as the fourth quarter was smooth sailing all the way. Cyclones take this one, 71-55.
Ashley Joens led the way per usual, scoring 24 points and grabbing 12 rebounds in a 40-minute effort. Lexi Donarski and Emily Ryan had 11 and 10 respectively, while Ny Diew added 8 off the bench.
Iowa State is back in action on Monday night in a game that could decide the Big 12 regular season champion against Baylor (6 pm, ESPN2) in Hilton Coliseum.