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ISU 66, Jacksonville State 60

It was nice to be in Hilton after what seemed to be a long layoff. What wasn't nice was walking outside before and after the game. It was COLD!!!!!!! I wonder what the Jacksonville State team thought of Iowa. I'm sure they just wanted to get out of here to get back in some decent weather!

Anyhow, I was happy with a win but the game was just so-so.

Positives:
  • We didn't lose. I was a little worried before the game, and was glad to see us get a win
  • Brackins came back! He wasn't much of a factor against Drake and Iowa, and it was nice to see him have his way at times in the post. We need Craig and he played well in a time when the rest of the team's shots weren't necessarily falling. He was aggressive offensively in the post and with rebounding. I saw him go after some rebounds that he wouldn't have even tried to go after earlier in the season which is good. I like to see the hustle!
  • Closed out the 1st half strong. Good teams finish the half strong. Both teams were pretty even for a while, but ISU went on a run to lead by 13 at the half. Petey hit a 3 at the buzzer. There's something SO FUN about watching the ball go in at the buzzer. It's hard to explain but it just pumps everyone up. It was a nice exclamation point.
  • Played a variety of players. At one point in the first half, we saw Haluska, Eikmeyer, Hamilton, Mann, and Buckley. As you can guess, not a lot of points came in. Hamilton had some easy looks, but he's such a work in progress. I do wonder why we saw no JVB? I'm not sure if he's in the dog house or what.
  • Got to see the new coach. Paul Rhoads came out at halftime and said what's up to everyone. He seems like a good guy and it was something fun to look forward to. Nice to turn the page and focus again on basketball

Negatives:

  • We keep trying give the game away. Either that, or we just don't know how to stay aggressive when we have a lead. We were up 42-27 at one point, and then it got to 60-56. If a couple of key plays went another way, Jacksonville State could've tied it up.
  • Not enough offense from everyone: Lucca, Eikmeyer, etc, have the ability to shoot well and put up lots of points. The problem is they aren't consistent. Too many times they score like 10-18 and then another game they get 3 or 4. I understand that there are times when the shot isn't falling, but they have to look to do more. We play good defense, but I don't see us being able to hold any of the teams in the top 5 under 60 points. We need to put up points. I'd like to see us score 75 or so, and allow 60-65, but oh well.
  • The weather. Mad cold. Not the teams fault, and Hilton was nice and warm!

It was nice to get a win. With all of the drama and negativity going on in Cyclone Nation, it was nice to leave with something somewhat positive. We're lost to worse than Jacksonville State, so it's important not to take anything for granted.

Player of the Game: Craig Brackins, 28 points,17 rebounds, and 2 blocks. Nice to see him do well offensively and defensively.

Next Game: Tuesday, 12/23 vs. South Dakota State 7pm on Mediacom. Lets win the mythical Cy-JackRabbit Series Trophy!