DALLAS - Iowa State's magic number remains 70. The
Cyclones improved to 11-0 when scoring at least 70 points in a 72-68 win over
Texas in the first round of the Phillips 66 Big 12 Women's Basketball
Championship Tuesday in Reunion Arena. ISU avenged an early season 30-point loss
to the Longhorns and faces top-seeded Oklahoma Wednesday at noon in the
"I couldn't be more proud of the effort of our team," ISU
head coach Bill Fennelly said. "That was as
gutsy an effort as we've had in a long time. It was a tremendous effort,
tremendous finish and we're honored to be playing again tomorrow."
Trailing 57-50 with 6:23 left in the game, Iowa State
went on a 15-2 run, taking advantage of four Texas turnovers and 1-of-6 shooting
by the Longhorns, giving the Cyclones a 65-59 lead with 1:32 on the clock.
Rebounding and 7-of-8 free throw shooting sealed the victory for Iowa State and
gave the Cyclones their fifth win of the season after trailing at the half.
ISU got 19 points from both Brittany Wilkins and Heather Ezell, while Lyndsey Medders added 17. Megan Ronhovde pulled down 10
boards to go with her nine points, the ninth time this season the junior has
recorded double-digit rebounds. Ezell's 19 points were the most for her against
a conference foe and broke a string of five games without scoring in double
"You know, you lose you're
out," Ezell said. "So it's time to no matter what, no excuses, to put the ball
in the hole. I kind of got that mentality and if I was open, I was going to put
Texas jumped out to an early 4-0 lead within the first
two minutes, but missed its next four shots to allow Iowa State take over a
one-point lead. The teams traded baskets, and the lead, but the Cyclones went
0-of-6 from the floor over the next four minutes while the Longhorns went on an
8-0 run to pull ahead 22-12 with 10:26 left in the first half.
UT enjoyed a 10-point lead for over four minutes before
Iowa State got a basket and a 3-pointer from Medders to start a Cyclone run that
would narrow the gap to just two and ISU would go into the locker room trailing
Iowa State owned a 21-17 rebounding edge at the break and
had one less turnover (8-7) than the Longhorns. Texas shot 40 percent to ISU's
37.5 percent accuracy, getting 10 first-half points from Daria Mieloszynska.
Mieloszynska, who scorched ISU with 32 points on six 3-pointers in the first
meeting of the season, had a pair of threes at half. All six Cyclones that
played in the first half put up scored, led by Medders with eight.
Wilkins tied up the game with the first basket of the
second half and the teams traded the lead five times within the first seven
minutes of the half. Texas scored six unanswered points, pulling ahead by five
and countered the Cyclone offense to lead by as much as seven (57-50) with 6:23
left in the game.
The Cyclones outrebounded Texas 42-33 and shot 43.1
percent from the floor, ISU's best offensive performance in the last six
outings. UT All-American Tiffany Jackson led the Longhorns with 16 points. Iowa
State advanced to the quarterfinals for the third consecutive year. ISU
committed 30 turnovers in its regular-season loss at Texas. The Cyclones cut
that figure to 16 Tuesday.