Women's Basketball

WBB: Joens scores 33, Cyclones roll in matinee matchup

No. 7 Iowa State cruised in its fourth game of the season, taking Columbia 99-76 in a dominant win at Hilton Coliseum.

The Cyclones were led by Ashley Joens, who finished with 33 points and cashed in on seven of the team’s 12 3-pointers.

“Her shot attempts are going down and her makes are going up,” Fennelly said. “I think she’s done a good job limiting her turnovers and she’s a hard kid to guard in space. This week was a really good week to showcase that for her.”

The mark is Joens’ highest of the season, topping her 28-point game against Cleveland State to open the season.

Emily Ryan added 13 points, 9 assists and 8 rebounds the day before checking out of the game in the fourth quarter.

The win puts Iowa State in a position to match its highest AP Poll ranking in program history.

When polls come out on Monday afternoon, the Cyclones will likely be a top five team.

“I think it’s a great thing,” Fennelly said. “And if we go to Oregon and lose, that’s OK. It’s a great thing for our players to see that we are viewed as one of the best teams in the country. I’m not saying that we’re the seventh best team in the country, but who is… why not us?”

That won’t mean anything on the court in Portland at its midseason tournament, but does offer some momentum for the Cyclones.

They’ll enter the tournament looking for a trophy in the four-team field that includes Michigan State, North Carolina and Oregon.

“I thought we had a really good week,” Fennelly said. “(We faced) two really good teams this week. I’m proud of where we are, but obviously a lot of work to do, like everyone.”

“It means a lot, just to be able to say that we got ranked that high,” Joens said. “It shows what not only we think about our team, but what other people think about our team, as well. It’s exciting, but we have to know that every team is going to come out and give us our best shot.”

Iowa State will kick off its Phil Knight Invitational tournament on Thanksgiving against Michigan State (6:30 p.m. ESPNU).