Workmanlike Cyclones cruise past Islanders
AMES --- Iowa State’s 80-50 win over Texas A&M Corpus Christi wasn’t the most exhilarating game in the 42-year history of Hilton Coliseum. Leading up to Sunday’s showdown with seventh-ranked Michigan though, it works.
What Fred Hoiberg’s Cyclones currently lacked in polish this early in the season, they make up for with confidence and it showed on Tuesday night in front of a surprisingly boisterous crowd.
This wasn’t supposed to be a great 3-point shooting team but these Cyclones have made 10 or more threes in both games so far. Tuesday night’s final box score was a bit of a surprise when you consider that junior Dustin Hogue was 3-for-3 from long range. Hogue, who finished with 13 points and eight rebounds, energized Iowa State during what was a monotonous first half.
“Dustin was terrific tonight not just scoring the ball but he was all over the court,” Hoiberg said. “I looked at the box score to see that he only had eight rebounds. I thought that he had about 20 out there. He got his hands on so many balls. He was just a monster out there all over the court.”
That will be Hogue’s primary role this season – energy, not 3-point shooting. But it is encouraging to see that the trey ball is a part of the JUCO transfer’s game too though.
“I have been working on my jump shot a lot lately and Coach Fred has worked with me a lot on my perimeter game,” Hogue said. “For me to be able to hit shots from behind the arc felt good.”
All around, Hogue was efficient. His final stat line showed a 5-for-6 outing and the eight boards were a team high.
“I always think of myself as a hyper guy,” Hogue said. “If I can play the role of being energetic and come out and play defense with a little energy so that they can build off of me then I am cool with that role every night.”
Spread it out – Five Cyclones have scored in double figures in each of the first two games of the season. DeAndre Kane led the way with 15. Hogue and Matt Thomas had 13 a piece. Georges Niang scored 12 and Monte Morris came off the bench to chip in with 11.
“I like seeing the balance” Hoiberg said. “We scored 80 and the leading scorer has 15. It’s good to get all of those guys involved.”
3-point shooting – It’s still early and the Cyclones still haven’t played anyone that can be referred to as good on defense yet, but perhaps this Iowa State team will be better from 3-point range than many of us thought? It’s worth talking about. Hogue’s 3-for-3 night was the highlight.
“He was in the gym for a good hour yesterday after practice working on his shot and trying to find that rhythm and obviously that pays off when you do that, when you put that extra time in,” Hoiberg said.
Thomas converted on three 3-pointers as well. Morris hit two, while Naz Long, Kane and K.J. Bluford made one a piece.
100 – Iowa State’s domination of Texas A&M-Corpus Christi marked Fred Hoiberg’s 100th career win in Hilton Coliseum. Fifty-three of them came as a player, the other 47 as a head ccoach.
Rebounding – The Islanders actually out-rebounded Iowa State 23-20 in the first half. Iowa State bounced back and beat the Islanders on the glass in the second half and won the final margin 40-39.
Percy Gibson – Because Daniel Edozie is clearly Hoiberg’s go-to big man on the bench right now with Melvin Ejim being out of the lineup. Edozie played nine first half minutes on Tuesday night compared to Gibson not leaving the bench. Overall, Edozie played 15 minutes to Gibson’s eight.
“I just thought that Daniel’s energy was really good in our first game,” Hoiberg said. “I thought he really battled and defended on the block and rebounded well – really went up there strong with two hands.
Big 12 – Two Big 12 teams lost non-conference games on Tuesday while Texas nearly dropped a home contest to South Alabama.
TCU was beaten 82-79 by Longwood (after losing to SMU on Friday night). West Virginia lost a respectable road game to Virginia Tech.
Texas’ two home wins over Mercer and South Alabama have come by a combined 10 points.
Iowa State will host seventh-ranked Michigan on Sunday at 4 p.m. Michigan is 2-0 after defeating South Carolina State 93-59. We will have plenty more on that big game later this week at CycloneFanatic.com.