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College Basketball: Iowa State Cyclones open NCAA Tournament with win over South Dakota State, 82-65

OMAHA, Neb. – No. 4 Iowa State (28-7, 13-5 Big 12) earned its 28th win of the season Thursday night, tying it with the 2013-14 squad for the second most wins in a single season in program history, as it defeated 15-seeded South Dakota State by 17 points, 82-65.

OMAHA, Neb. – No. 4 Iowa State (28-7, 13-5 Big 12) earned its 28th win of the season Thursday night, tying it with the 2013-14 squad for the second most wins in a single season in program history, as it defeated 15-seeded South Dakota State by 17 points, 82-65.

In a game where head coach T.J. Otzelberger coached against his former team and staff members, Iowa State prevailed, sharing an NCAA school record 23 assists on the evening. ISU shot 57.9 percent from the field and 47.8 percent from beyond the arc as it raced past the Jacks.

The Cyclones looked like they were going to run away with things early, only for SDSU to respond and trim the halftime lead to seven before making it a four-point contest early in the second half. ISU responded though, thoroughly dominating the second stanza as it earned the third postseason victory under Coach Otz. Iowa State led wall-to-wall, not trailing for a single second of the game.

For the first time since the Nevada win in the NCAA Tournament in 2017, the Cyclones saw five players finish in double figures. Milan Momcilovic led the way with a game-high 19 points. Tamin Lipsey chipped in 17 with seven assists while Keshon Gilbert had 15 points with five assists and a game-high three steals. Curtis Jones (11) and Hason Ward (10) rounded out the double-digit scoring efforts for the Cyclones.

South Dakota State’s Zeke Mayo had 19 points on 5-of-11 shooting while William Kyle III had 14 points and seven boards.

Iowa State jumped on the Jacks early, bullying its way to an early 22-7 lead. The Cyclones used four SDSU turnovers and three straight Hason Ward alley oop finishes to make it a 15-point lead – their largest of the half – just over six minutes into the contest.

After taking the first punch, the Jackrabbits countered with a quick 10-0 run to trim the Cyclone lead to five with just over ten minutes remaining in the stanza.

The Cyclones battled off every SDSU attempt at making things close, not letting the Jackrabbit back within six and even making it a 12-point lead with 3:40 to go. A pair of baskets from both Luke Appel and Zeke Mayo helped the Jacks end the half on a 9-2 run, trimming the Cyclone lead to seven at the break.

Momcilovic led all scorers at the break with 12 while both Hason Ward and Tamin Lipsey each had eight. Keshon Gilbert had seven points and three steals but had to take a seat with two fouls, playing only 11 first half minutes.

The Jackrabbits gained quick momentum out of the break, immediately trimming the ISU lead to three off of a Mayo 3-pointer. Lipsey responded with a layup on the other end only to see an SDSU steal and another Jackrabbit basket make it a four-point margin a minute thirty in.

The Cyclones responded to the Jacks’ quick burst out of the break emphatically, rattling off 12 straight to take a 16 point lead and put things out of hand at the 16-minute mark. The second-half Cyclone lead ballooned to as 24 with 3:36 remaining before Iowa State eventually went on to win by 17 points, 82-65.

Top Performers

Milan Momcilovic picked a great time to drop his second-highest scoring output of the season, as the rookie out of Pewaukee finished with 19 points on 8-of-15 shooting with five boards in a team-high 36 minutes of action.

Notes

  • Tre King played in his 150th career game.
  • Jackson Paveletzke cashed his 60th career triple.
  • Curtis Jones pulled down his 300th career rebound on the night and now sits at 302.
  • Jones also crossed the 600-point threshold and now has 905.
  • Keshon Gilbert made his 300th career field goal and also went over 300 career assists on the day.
  • Milan Momcilovic is now two made 3-pointers away from number two on the all-time ISU freshman list.
  • Milan Momcilovic is now two made 3-pointers away from number two on the all-time ISU freshman list.

Up Next

Iowa State will have one more game in Omaha, as the Cyclones await the winner of the (7) Washington State and (10) Drake game. ISU and Thursday night’s WSU/Drake winner will square off on Saturday, March 23, at a to-be-determined time.

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