Women's Basketball

WBB: Fennelly pleased with Jacksonville win despite 3-point slump

Iowa State has found itself in a bit of a lull as far as 3-point shooting goes.

In the team’s 84-50 win over Jacksonville Sunday, the Cyclones shot 9-31 from distance, making it the fourth-straight game the team has shot worse than 33 percent in the category.

Those numbers aren’t worrying coach Bill Fennelly, though.

“We have kids that can make it,” Fennelly said. “We’re not making it now, but hopefully that will come. The biggest thing about it is shot selection and I thought ours was good today. I thought we were open, we flooded to the ball. We moved the ball. We didn’t make as many as we’d like, but our (shot) selection was good.”

In usual Iowa State fashion, the Cyclones took a plethora of open shots.

This four-game stretch has been an anomoly not many saw coming – and it’s led to a 2-2 mark in those games.

But that’s just the nature of the game.

“We don’t talk about it – maybe we should,” Fennelly joked. “It’s not for lack of effort. They’re all in the gym a lot. It’s not about skill and it’s not about want-to. You’ve just got to see it go in a few times.”

Ashley Joens led the team in scoring, finishing with 22 points and 10 rebounds to earn her 53rd career double-double as a Cyclone.

Fennelly said that this was in response to challenging his star player a little in practice over the weekend.

“I really challenged Ashley Joens yesterday in practice,” Fennelly said. “The way she responded was exactly what I anticipated. I thought she was fantastic from start-to-finish and that set the tone for everyone.”

Stephanie Soares earned 20 points, eight rebounds and four blocks as she continues to become accustomed to the sport at a high level.

“She took the other night really hard,” Soares said. “It just wasn’t a great night against a really good team. She’s skilled. She plays hard. She works at it every day at practice.”

After missing six free throws in that Cy-Hawk game, Soares responded by sinking all five from the free throw line on Sunday.

Iowa State will return to the court for its penultimate non-conference game of the season next Sunday, when it takes on No. 25 Villanova in the Invesco QQQ Basketball Hall of Fame Women’s Showcase in Uncasville, Conn. (2:30 p.m. ESPN/2)