Hilton South, baby
Not a lot better for Cyclone fans than taking themselves to the Power and Light District and raising glasses of Busch high in the air to cheer on the Cyclones in Kansas City. After a disappointing end to the Men’s tournament yesterday, Cyclone fans got the chance for a rebound tonight as the 10th ranked Cyclones took on the Mountaineers.
The first half started just how you would expect any other Cyclone women’s game to go. A lot of offense. Both teams started out relatively hot from the floor in the first quarter of the game as the Cyclones took a 21-19 lead into the 2nd.
It was there that the Cyclones jumped all over West Virginia’s offense and absolutely punished them on both ends of the floor. Led by Ashley Joens and Emily Ryan, the Cyclones outscored the Mountaineers 20-9 in the second quarter and extended their lead all the way out to 13 points at the half. Taking full advantage of an almost 6-minute scoreless drought midway through the quarter, Iowa State went on a 12-0 run which really cushioned what would happen coming out of the half.
The hot shooting, especially from deep, from Iowa State would not continue through the intermission as West Virginia tightened up on defense. Fortunately for Bill Fennelly and company, it didn’t come until the 7:55 mark of the 3rd quarter. With the Cyclones up 49-28, they went ice cold from the floor only scoring 2 points the remainder of the frame as the Mountaineers closed the gap from 21 points to a mere 7 with 10 minutes to go.
The Cyclones maintained their cold streak into the 4th quarter but tightened up on the defensive end enough to keep West Virginia at bay. The Mountaineers closed the gap to 5 at various points towards the end of the game, but some clutch free throws down the stretch were able to put the game away despite the comeback effort.
It wasn’t the prettiest of halves, but the Cyclones did enough to ice the game late and survived the WVU run, 66-60. They’ll take on the winner of the last Friday night game between Kansas State and Texas tomorrow (Saturday) at 2:30 p.m.