In Iowa State’s early season games this year, it became a trend to see Ashley Joens score in waves to bail her team out on the scoreboard.
On Tuesday, when the hot shooting team from this past weekend didn’t show up, the story was similar.
“I’m not at a loss for words very often, but it’s hard to put this into words,” Iowa State head coach Bill Fennelly said. “Oklahoma out-played us. They out-coached us. We were lucky to win.”
It took a basket from Joens with just over 10 seconds to play in the game for the Cyclones to get the 64-63 win.
Iowa State got bailed out.
“(We) just really lacked energy,” Fennelly said. “I don’t know. Obviously, I did a really good job of getting them ready to go.”
Joens finished the game taking 25 shots and playing for 39 minutes in the win.
She had 32 points and 16 rebounds, including the game-winning shot for the second-straight game.
“I enjoy having the ball in those situations,” Joens said. “Every kid dreams about being put in those positions at the end of the game to be able to make those big shots. Just to be able to do that here and contribute to this team means a lot.”
When taking Joens’ mark out of the box score, the Cyclones shot 12-37 from the field on Tuesday.
She was the glue holding together this team from a disappointing loss following its best win of the season.
Iowa State trailed 63-60 with 26.2 seconds remaining on the clock.
Instead of holding the ball for a game-tying 3-pointer, Fennelly pushed his team to take a quick shot.
“We just felt we were struggling to score so much, that we weren’t just going to hold it,” Fennelly said. “We’re down three. We wanted to get a quick two, not foul a certain person… all the stuff you go through in practice.”
Joens hit the quick two. On the other end, she drew a charge, and just like that the Cyclones had the ball with just a one-point deficit.
Fennelly opted to go down quickly once again, with Joens hitting the game winner, and his squad hanging on.
“It went exactly the way it needed to go for us to have a chance to win,” Fennelly said.
If it was anything to this group of players, Iowa State got a wake-up call in the win that pushed them to a Big 12-best 6-1 on the season.
That ‘one’ in the record is there, too, because of the team that Iowa State will face the next time it sets foot on the court on Saturday.
“(It’s) definitely (a wakeup call),” Joens said. “We can’t play like this when we play Texas. Texas is a little bigger. They’ve got a lot of talent as well…
“We have to get better.”