No. 20 Iowa State cruises past mistake-prone McNeese State
Field Level Media
Dec 11, 2022
Aljaz Kunc scored a game-high 21 points Sunday and No. 20 Iowa State forced 30 turnovers in a 77-40 non-conference blowout of McNeese State in Ames, Iowa.
Jaren Holmes chipped in 17 and Gabe Kalscheur added 15 points for the Cyclones (8-2). Tamin Lipsey chipped in eight assists for Iowa State, which converted 54.5 percent of its field goal attempts, including 10 of 18 from the 3-point line.
But the story was the Cyclones' defense, which stifled the Cowboys (3-7). Iowa State cashed in on McNeese State's frequent mistakes for 36 points, forcing 16 turnovers in the second half.
The Cowboys took just 38 shots from the field, hitting 36.8 percent, and had no one in double figures. Trae English and Zach Scott each scored eight points for McNeese State, but leading scorer Christian Shumate was held to five points and committed a game-high eight turnovers in 29 minutes.
Iowa State held the Cowboys scoreless for the first 8:40 of the second half, rattling off 15 straight points to take a 48-24 lead on Kalscheur's 3-pointer with 13:36 left. The cushion never dipped below 21 points for the game's remainder.
McNeese State got just 17 points from its starting lineup.
It didn't take the Cyclones long to put their stamp on this one. They established a 12-2 lead just over four minutes into the game, getting seven points from Kunc. He opened the game with a 3-pointer and added consecutive layups.
The margin reached as high as 11 later before McNeese State managed to work its way into contention. The Cowboys went on a 9-3 run to pull within three points on a Roberts Berze 3-pointer and was able to stay within shouting distance.
Iowa State took momentum into the locker room, though, as Holmes grabbed the rebound of his missed shot and converted it into a three-point play with six seconds left. That enabled the Cyclones to lead at the half, 33-24.
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