No. 17 Iowa State Prevails Over UNI, 91-82
DES MOINES, Iowa – No. 17 Iowa State was taken to overtime Saturday at Wells Fargo Arena by the UNI Panthers in the Hy-Vee Big Four Classic, but the Cyclones were able to overcome the Panthers 91-82 to earn their first 7-0 start to a season since 2003-04. UNI falls to 3-5 on the season.
After coming back from an 18-point deficit, Iowa State had re-taken the lead at 60-59 with just over five minutes left in regulation, but UNI center Seth Tuttle banked in a 3-pointer with 1.3 seconds left to tie the game 71-71 and force the game to overtime.
In the overtime period, Iowa State led from the first points of the extra session which featured six points each by Melvin Ejim, Dustin Hogue and DeAndre Kane.
The 18-point second-half deficit overcome marks the third biggest comeback in school history.
Key Moments of the Game
Heading into halftime with a 13-point deficit, it was important for Iowa State to get back into the game early. However, the Panthers were ready to defend their lead, increasing it to as much as 18 points.
The Cyclones finally came alive with a 23-2 run to get the lead for the first time since the 16:18 mark of the first half. One of the keys to the run was free throw shooting as Iowa State, who had been 4-of-11 at the stripe, made all five of its free throws during the run.
The Panthers stormed back with a 7-0 run of its own to restore its lead to 58-54. The Cyclones were able to battle back again and it was Melvin Ejim who drained a corner 3-pointer with 5:17 to go to give Iowa State a 60-59 lead that they would not concede until Tuttle's banked 3-pointer.
In overtime, Iowa State led the whole way, but saw its lead reduced to one point, 76-75 before the Cyclones fired off a 9-0 run to put the game away for good.
Discuss it now. Visit our Facebook page to have your say on the key moments of today's game.
Cyclone Game Ball Goes to…
Melvin Ejim. After Georges Niang, who recorded a career-high 22 points, fouled out with 1:42 left in regulation, Iowa State would need a new primary source of scoring to get them through the overtime session.
Cue up Iowa State’s All-Big 12 performer and senior leader Ejim to get the job done. Ejim hit two big 3-pointers in overtime to salt away the Iowa State victory.
Ejim finished the game with 22 points, tying his career-high he set against Michigan in November. He also chipped in with seven rebounds, three assists and two steals.
Cyclone Nation, who was your player of the game? Tweet the player along with the hashtag #CyclONEgameball to @CycloneMBB and we'll announce the fan's pick.
*Iowa State is 7-0 for the first time since 2003-04. This season marks the first in school history where both Iowa State's men and women started the season 7-0.
*The win snapped Iowa State's three-game losing streak to UNI.
*For the second consecutive game, Iowa State had two players record double-doubles via Dustin Hogue (18 points, 11 rebounds) and Dustin Hogue (17 points, 14 rebounds).
*Melvin Ejim finished with seven rebounds to move up to 805 rebounds in his career. He is the sixth player in Iowa State history to reach that milestone.
*Ejim finished with 22 points, his eighth-consecutive game dating back to last season with at least 10 points.
*This marks the second time in Melvin Ejim’s career he finished with 22 points at Wells Fargo Arena. As a freshman, Ejim had 22 in ISU’s win over Creighton.
*Naz Long has at least one 3-pointer in each game this season.
*Georges Niang finished with a career-high 22 points. He had previously scored 19 points on four occasions, most recently at BYU back in November.
*Niang is the fifth Cyclone to post a 20+ point game this season (Ejim, Long, Houge, Kane).
*Niang also posted a career-high four steals. He has no steals on the season coming into the game.
No. 17 Iowa State returns to Hilton Coliseum for the Iowa Corn Cy-Hawk Series showdown against No. 23 Iowa Friday at 8:30 p.m. The game will be televised on ESPNU.
Fan Tweet of the Game