Women's Basketball

WBB PREVIEW: Five points on the Iowa Hawkeyes

Nov 30, 2016; Iowa City, IA, USA; Iowa Hawkeyes guard Ally Disterhoft (2) controls the ball during the second half against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish at Carver-Hawkeye Arena. Notre Dame won 73-58. Mandatory Credit: Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

Here are five things to know before Iowa State heads to Iowa City to take on in-state rival Iowa in the annual Cy-Hawk game. 

1 – Everything to know about the Iowa Hawkeyes

Lisa Bluder is entering her 17th season at helm in Iowa City.

Last year, her Hawkeye squad finished with a 19-14 record, which was good for a ninth place finish in the Big Ten. Iowa missed out on the NCAA Tournament and was labeled one of the “first four out.” The Hawkeyes played in the NIT, where they suffered a 77-72 first round lost to the Ball State Cardinals.

Iowa returns senior guard Ally Disterhoft, who was picked for the preseason All-Big Ten team by the coaches and media. Through nine games, Disterhoft has certainly lived up to that selection. In outings against Notre Dame, UCLA and UNI, Disterhoft scored 16, 18 and 17 points respectively. On the season, Disterhoft is shooting an outstanding 62.8 percent from the field while averaging 18 points, 5.8 rebounds and 2.9 assists per game.

Although Iowa’s offense runs through Disterhoft, she isn’t the only Hawkeye who can put the ball in the basket. Forward Megan Gustafson, who stands 6-foot-3, is averaging 16.8 points and guard Tania Davis is chipping in at 9.4 points per contest.

Iowa’s (6-3) six wins were against Oral Roberts, Hampton, North Dakota, Massachusetts, James Madison and UNI. Their three losses were to South Dakota State, UCLA and Notre Dame.

2 – This team can score

Although Iowa’s offense is ranked 30 spots lower than Iowa State’s (No. 44 compared to No. 14), the Hawkeyes can still put the ball in the basket.

On the season, the Hawkeyes are averaging 76.8 points per game. While that average is roughly seven points lower than Iowa State’s (84), Iowa has played a significantly tougher schedule than the Cyclones. 

Against the two team’s common opponent, UNI, the Hawkeyes defeated the Panthers 88-39 while the Cyclones squeaked out a 76-68 victory. 

3 – They turn the ball over 

In the Hawkeye’s nine games, they are averaging 18.7 giveaways per game, which ranks 263rd nationally. Note: there are 344 teams in the Division I basketball.

Also, Iowa is -2.7 in the turnover margin on the season as well. Iowa State is creating 15.7 turnovers and 12 giveaways so far in 2016.

4 – They defend the three very well

As of late, the Cyclones have been a hot shooting 3-point team. In Iowa State’s last three games (Arkansas State, No. 6 Mississippi State and New Orleans), the Cyclones have shot: 52.2, 66.7 and 66.7 percent behind the arc. However, Iowa is only allowing its opponents to shoot 26 percent from behind the 3-point line, good for No. 40 in the country.

5 – They are good on the boards 

If you were to ask Iowa State coach Bill Fennelly what his team’s biggest weakness is, he would probably answer with: Rebounding. And the Cyclones will need to have a strong outing on the glass against the Hawkeyes.

Iowa is currently averaging 43.88 broads per game. That is roughly six grabs better than Iowa State at 37.9.

Last season’s matchup at Hilton Coliseum came down to the final seconds as the Cyclones won a gritty 40 minute outing against the Hawkeyes, 69-66. Expect this year’s Cy-Hawk game to be like last year’s contest as both units have proven themselves early and often this season. 

Garrett Kroeger

Cyclone Fanatic Publisher

Garrett is an intern for Cyclone Fanatic and is currently a junior at THE Iowa State University. He is studying Journalism and Mass Communications while minoring in Sports and Rec. If you like college football, NBA or just random life tweets, Garrett is a must follow on Twitter: @gkroegs.