Iowa State tried every route on the map to get from point A to point B during Wednesday night’s 65-56 loss to No. 21 West Virginia.
The Cyclones tried to throw the ball to the interior utilizing back door cuts and spacing, which created turnovers.
If that didn’t work, they took the ball outside and found open shots from the 3-point line. They ended the game with an 11-39 mark from downtown.
Through the seldom times they got the ball to the free throw line, the team only made one out of four.
“You’re going to have a hard time winning at any level only shooting four free throws,” Iowa State coach Bill Fennelly said. “We’ve got to be more aggressive in taking the ball to the basket. When we get outscored 15-1 at the free throw line… that was a bad one.”
West Virginia just had a game plan that stunted what Iowa State needed to do to win.
It wasn’t like the shot selection was missing from the Cyclones’ offense.
“I thought we had good shots,” Fennelly said. “Not every one was wide open, but I think when you take a lot of them, that’s our game. They were doing a good job of double-teaming (Ashley Joens) and kicking it out. I thought (Joens) probably forced a couple shots at the end of the clock, maybe, but that was the way we were going to score today.”
Fennelly was also frustrated after the game with Joens’ free throw mark.
It read 0-0.
“We couldn’t get (Joens) to the free throw line either,” Fennelly said. “I don’t know the last time Ashley Joens played a game and didn’t shoot a free throw. I think that tells you something, too.”
It showed Iowa State’s size discrepancy.
Joens would get the ball and immediately see a double team to where she would kick the ball to the outside.
“They really packed the lane,” Joens said. “They pressured up and made it really difficult to get inside so we had to look outside to try and knock down some shots.”
The loss is Iowa State’s second-straight and drops the team’s record to 11-7 on the season and 6-4 in the Big 12 with just a handful of games remaining in the season.
Iowa State will have six games remaining in the regular season which will be seven games if the Big 12 reschedules the team’s game against Kansas that was postponed from January.
They’ll next be on the court on Saturday as the Cyclones welcome Texas Tech to Ames for a 2:00 p.m. tipoff at Hilton Coliseum.