Women's Basketball

WBB: Early barrage of three’s leads Cyclones over KU

Iowa State fans have seen their share of elite, distance shooting teams. Not many have seen the Cyclones bury five 3-pointers on consecutive possessions, however.

The No. 9 Cyclones did just that in Lawrence on Wednesday night, putting together a 17-2 run that provided a massive cushion in the 85-59 win.

“We shot the ball great,” Iowa State coach Bill Fennelly said on the Cyclone Radio Network. “I thought our guard play was fantastic, start-to-finish. Obviously, when you shoot 50 percent from three, it cures a lot of ills.”

The stretch came when the game was tied 4-4.

Ashley Joens hit back-to-back threes, Lexi Donarski made her first of the game, Joens hit another and then Aubrey Joens hit a fifth.

Kansas called a timeout trailing 19-6.

“It was a lot of fun,” Donarski said on the radio broadcast. “We were super unselfish tonight, sharing the ball. It’s not like they’re coming from the same person, either. Everyone was hitting shots. It showed how unselfish we are.”

Iowa State finished the game with 20 assists on 29 made-field goal attempts.

Emily Ryan was responsible for 11 of the dimes, along with her seven rebounds and 10 points in another all-around effort.

“She’s almost surgical at times,” Fennelly said. “She knows exactly who wants the ball and when they want the ball. That’s exactly what you look for in a point guard. To have someone that is that young that has trust from her teammates and everybody is incredible.”

Joens and Donarski combined for 43 points and the Cyclones got some makes from just about every player on the roster.

Even after a rough start to the night, Nyamer Diew grabbed a pair of 3-pointers in the second half.

“I thought (Diew) was really good,” Fennelly said on the Cyclone Radio Network. “We told her that she was going to have to play the five-spot. She was 0-8 at halftime and we just kept saying, ‘keep shooting.’ She knocked (the first one) in and that was good to see.”

It was as dominant of a performance as a team can expect to have against a conference opponent on a seven-game win streak.

The win is the team’s 15th-straight against Kansas and gives the Cyclones a 23-4 record on the season, along with a 12-3 mark with three games to go in conference play.

“Kansas is doing it right,” Fennelly said on the broadcast. “They’re an NCAA Tournament team. You don’t win seven games in a row in this league by accident and it’s great to see the fans showing their support here of (KU).”

Iowa State will return to the court Saturday afternoon, facing off with Texas Tech, before a looming top 10 matchup against Baylor that could decide the regular-season Big 12 title.

If the team shoots as well as it did on Wednesday, its fans will have a lot to celebrate.

Big 12 WBB Standings

1Iowa State23-412-3
6Kansas State18-98-74.0
7West Virginia12-135-107.0
8Oklahoma State8-163-129.0
8Texas Tech10-163-129.0
Remaining Big 12 Schedule
Wednesday, February 23
No. 6 Iowa State (12-3) 85, Kansas (10-5) 59
No. 5 Baylor (12-3) 65, Oklahoma State (3-12) 58
No. 11 Texas (10-5) 62, Kansas State (8-7) 51
No. 20 Oklahoma (10-5) 92, TCU (2-13) 57
West Virginia (5-10) @ Texas Tech (3-12)

Saturday, February 26
1:00pm – Texas Tech (3-11) @ No. 9 Iowa State (12-3)
2:00pm – Kansas (10-5) @ No. 5 Baylor (12-3)
2:00pm – Kansas State (8-7) @ No. 20 Oklahoma (10-5)
7:00pm – TCU (2-13) @ No. 11 Texas (10-5)
Sunday, February 27
12:00pm – Oklahoma State (3-12) @ West Virginia (5-10)

Monday, February 28
6:00pm – No. 5 Baylor (12-3) @ No. 9 Iowa State (12-3)
Wednesday, March 2
6:30pm – No. 20 Oklahoma (10-5) @ Oklahoma State (3-12)
6:30pm – West Virginia (5-10) @ Kansas State (8-7)
7:00pm – Kansas (10-5) @ No. 11 Texas (10-5)
7:00pm – TCU (2-13) @ Texas Tech (3-12)

Saturday, March 5
1:00pm – Oklahoma State (3-12) @ No. 11 Texas (10-5)
1:00pm – Kansas State (8-7) @ TCU (2-13)
2:00pm – Kansas (10-5) @ No. 20 Oklahoma (10-5)
6:00pm – No. 9 Iowa State (12-3) @ West Virginia (5-10)
Sunday, March 6
2:00pm – Texas Tech (3-12) @ No. 5 Baylor (12-3)