By Anthony Hanson, KURE 88.5 Sports Reporter
AMES — No. 23 Iowa State got the fast start it was looking for Saturday against Oklahoma but couldn’t maintain the energy and physicality for a complete 40 minutes.
The Cyclones jumped out to a 14-3 lead Saturday at Hilton Coliseum against the unranked Sooners. But Oklahoma responded by stealing momentum and handing Iowa State its second loss at home by a score of 61-50.
Oklahoma made 10 three-point field goals out of 19 total field goals made while battling back from the early deficit.
“We certainly demand more, have higher standards and expect more from ourselves,” Iowa State head coach T.J. Otzelberger said post game. Iowa State now has lost three consecutive games and six of its last eight.
“We got to dig deep and find a way.”
Oklahoma, who defeated No. 1 Alabama earlier this season, has challenged Iowa State twice after an early Cyclone lead.
A hot start was key for Iowa State beating Oklahoma on January 4, almost two months ago. In their first Big 12 road game, the Cyclones came out to a 22-5 lead. The second half was lackluster in Norman, Oklahoma in January.
The Sooners rallied but Iowa State finished on top 63-60 in the teams’ first meeting. The hot start was key in giving Iowa State the win in a game that saw Iowa State struggle in key moments, Otzleberger said Thursday.
Saturday, Iowa State found itself with an early lead again. The Cyclones were ahead 14-3 after an Oklahoma timeout at the 12:51 mark of the first half. Oklahoma had only one field goal, a three-pointer from Milos Uzan, while Iowa State was firing on all cylinders.
Iowa State forced three turnovers and made two three-pointers during that span. The 11-point lead remained the largest for Iowa State in the entire game.
At the end of the first half, Oklahoma fought back get within five points of the Cyclones. The Oklahoma momentum continued at the start of the second half. Oklahoma forced Iowa State to take a timeout at the 13:35 mark in the second half after the Sooners scored 11 unanswered points.
“We just need to maintain that energy and physicality,” Iowa State point guard Tamin Lipsey said.
Lipsey had two rebounds and a steal during the first two minutes of the game.
Oklahoma was led by the Jacob Groves off the bench with 16 points. Groves led the Oklahoma scoring barrage from the outside with four three-point field goals on five attempts. Tanner Groves tallied a game-high 13 rebounds.
“Everybody doing what they can to contribute to the offense,” Otzelberger said. “Everybody’s got to step up and finish plays when they have the opportunity.”
Offensively, Iowa State finished shooting 31 percent from the field and 58.8 percent from the free throw line. Iowa State continued to struggle to score from the outside. Caleb Grill, who is still dealing with a back injury, was one-for-five from the outside.
Gabe Kalscheur made a team-high three three-pointers on five attempts. Kalscheur finished with a team-high of 12 points for Iowa State. Lipsey was the only other Cyclone in double figures with 10.