Iowa State got double digit scoring from all five starters in another blowout against a lesser foe at Hilton Coliseum this afternoon. Montana State came out in a matchup zone defense that slowed Iowa State's offensive attack. We saw guys shooting threes from 25-30 feet away, guys jacking up outside shots with hands in their faces, as it took Iowa State about a half of play to adjust to the zone. Iowa State went 2-12 from beyond the arc and shot only 34% overall in the first half. It was the first time Iowa State saw zone, and like most teams when they see the zone for the first time, it takes a while to adjust. In the second half, Iowa State was able to build off of a 4 point lead, to a 22 point victory.
Iowa State was able to force turnovers (12 steals) and pushed the tempo more, allowing guys to put up shots before the zone could get really set. Going into this game Montana State had only averaged 11 turnovers a game, so it was a nice defensive effort by the Cyclones to cause so many turnovers.
Melvin Ejim led Iowa State in scoring with 19 points, on 80% field goal shooting. Jake Anderson continues to help in other ways than scoring. Despite only going 4 of 13 from the floor, Anderson had 9 rebounds (6 offensive) and 2 steals, essentially creating 8 extra possessions for Iowa State. All of the starters had good stat lines, which isn't surprising considering the outcome.
A final note about this game: blowouts are not always the most fun games to watch, but it really is nice seeing the Cyclones take care of business against teams they really should be. It gives a much better feeling going into December, where they will play some more formidable opponents.
The Cyclones go on the road take on the Panthers on Wednesday, December 1st, at 7pm CST in what should be a great test for this group. You do not really know what you have from a team, until they play in a hostile environment.