Babb goes off in Cyclone rout over Rice

By Chris Williams, Publisher

Chris Babb made seven of his 11 3-point attempts on Saturday night to score 26 points and lead Iowa State to a 90-63 blowout over Rice in the South Padre Island Invitational.

Iowa State went 14-for-29 from 3-point range as a team.

For the second night in a row, junior Tyrus McGee came off of the bench to spark Iowa State. McGee scored 17 points in the win in 24 minutes of play.

Scott Christopherson and Chris Allen both finished in double figures, with 10 a piece.

Iowa State muscled its South Padre opponent on the glass for the second night in a row. The Cyclones out-rebounded the Owls 46-31.  Melvin Ejim led Iowa State in that statistic, with 11 boards in the contest.

BOX SCORE: Iowa State 90, Rice 63

CLICK HERE for a complete game story with quotes from Fred Hoiberg and players from the Des Moines Register.

Chris’ Take: I’ll write more about this over the next few days, but this was as successful of a trip to South Padre Island as I think this team could have had. After what I consider to be an embarrassing defensive performance against Northern Colorado last Tuesday, Iowa State won a slugfest vs. Providence on Friday and held Rice to only 39 percent shooting on Saturday. I’m not sure what Fred Hoiberg said to his team but over the last two games the Cyclones appeared to have taken defense seriously for the first time this season. That’s encouraging, as a home date with Northern Iowa is just around the corner on Wednesday of this upcoming week.

NOTE: Northern Iowa defeated Providence on Saturday by a 79-62 final. The Cyclones and Panthers were declared co-champs of the invite.