WVU Routed By Iowa State
AMES, Iowa – Georges Niang scored 24 points, DeAndre Kane had 17 and 11 rebounds and No. 15 Iowa State beat West Virginia 83-66 on Wednesday night for its seventh victory in eight games.
Naz Long had 15 points on five 3-pointers for the Cyclones (22-5 overall, 10-5 Big 12), who have recorded three straight 10-victory seasons in league play for the first time.
Iowa State rolled despite playing nearly the entire second half without star Melvin Ejim, who sat because of foul trouble.
Dustin Hogue helped cover for Ejim’s absence inside with 15 points and nine rebounds, including a rare 3 with 3:17 left that put the Cyclones ahead 79-65.
Juwan Staten had 19 points and Eron Harris added 15 to lead West Virginia (15-13, 7-8), which lost its third straight.
West Virginia guard Terry Henderson, who averages 12.1 points, missed his second straight game with an undisclosed illness.
Iowa State looked ready to pull away from the Mountaineers early in the second half – and perhaps even match the 25-point beating West Virginia put on the Cyclones two weeks ago.
It wouldn’t prove to be so easy.
Ejim, a Big 12 Player of the Year candidate, picked up his fourth foul on a technical with 17:13 left. The Mountaineers quickly capitalized, cutting an 11-point deficit to 53-49.
But the Cyclones showed why they have got so much more than Ejim to lean on.
Long and Niang answered with crucial, consecutive 3s, and Long’s fifth 3 made it 64-54 with 9:45 left. Kane and Hogue followed with tough inside baskets, and Hogue’s tip-in gave the Cyclones a 72-61 lead.
Iowa State outscored the Mountaineers 46-24 in the paint despite getting just 20 minutes from Ejim.
Without question, the low point of Iowa State’s season came at the hands of West Virginia.
The Mountaineers jumped on the Cyclones from the opening tip and ran them out of Morgantown. To make matters worse, Harris was ejected late for drilling Monte Morris – shortly after Hogue kicked West Virginia’s Kevin Noreen while going for a rebound.
But Iowa State answered that embarrassing performance with three consecutive wins, while the Mountaineers lost to Texas and Baylor.
Things got chippy right away in Ames too, with Ejim and Noreen exchanging early words. West Virginia coach Bob Huggins then drew a technical for getting after the officials, and consecutive bank shots by Hogue capped a 24-5 run and gave Iowa State a 28-14 lead.
But the Cyclones are also prone to bouts of sloppy play, and they finished the half with a number of fouls and ill-advised shots that let the Mountaineers close within 39-33.
Iowa State pulled itself together in the second half for its seventh conference win of February – the most the Cyclones have ever had in one month.