Vanderbeken trey sinks McDermott, Jays

Sunday's game between the ISU men's basketball team and Creighton did not lack storylines or drama that is for certain. Jamie Vanderbeken buried a 35-foot bomb at the buzzer to give the Cyclones (4-0) a 91-88 win over the Bluejays (3-1) and coach Greg McDermott, who was coaching at Iowa State just over six months before the game.

Whether the game-winning shot should have counted or not is to be debated. After Antonie Young hit two free throws to tie the game at 88 with 1.6 seconds remaining, Cyclone coach Fred Hoiberg called timeout to dial up a play. Scott Christopherson hit Vanderbeken on that play and the post player turned and took two dribbles before launching his shot.

Replays that were shot by news outlets for highlights showed that, when the light came on behind the backboard to signal the end of the game, the ball had yet to leave Vanderbeken's hand. The play was unreviewable, however, because the game was not televised, meaning there is no replay.

"I thought I got it off," Vanderbeken said. "I can't control what the refs say, and if they say it's good, it's good."

Hoiberg said that the game was well officiated and that is a tough call to make regardless.

"It counted," Hoiberg said with a smile. "It's kind of ironic that it came down to that because it's a split second one way or the other."

Diante Garrett led the Cyclones with 28 points and seven assists and Melvin Ejim scored 22 as well. Jake Anderson had a monster game with 19 points and 15 rebounds and was also joined in double figures by Vanderbeken with 12 points and Christopherson with 10. Young led Creighton with 21 points.

McDermott said it was tough to play against a team that he was with such a short time ago.

"Every guy over there I recruited or had a hand in recruiting," McDermott said. "Several of the guys on the bench are good friends of mine, and I don't want them to lose and will cheer for them going forward."

Plenty of events led up to the final play of the game, however, including a couple of which that happened in the final 15 seconds. After a back-and-forth game during most of the first half, Creighton went on a 14-2 run to take a 51-39 lead on a three from Kaleb Korver.

"Coach got after us pretty hard after that," Garrett said. "We were down the majority of the game but we just kept fighting back."

Ejim and Garrett hit consecutive threes after the timeout to start the comeback but Iowa State still trailed 74-70 with less than eight minutes to go. Ejim then hit a three and another jumper and Jake Anderson punctuated the 7-0 run which gave the Cyclones the lead with a bucket inside.

"The game was going to go one of two ways; they were either going to pull away or we were going to make it a game and I'm glad the second thing happened," Hoiberg said. "That's what good teams do, when teams make a run they make a stand and respond with a run of their own."

The Cyclones eventually led 87-82 with 23 seconds left when Kenny Lawson Jr. hit a three to cut the lead to two. Iowa State missed three of four free throws and then fouled Young, who made the first free throw and intentionally missed the second.

Young got his own rebound and was fouled on a shot to tie it, which set up Vanderbeken's heroics.

"It was just another game but going up against coach McDermott did add a little bit to it," Vanderbeken said.

AllCyclones Top Stories