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Hawks outshoot Cyclones

BY RYAN RODRIGUEZ | DECEMBER 12, 2014 5:00 AM

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It didn’t take long for those in attendance at Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Thursday night to discover what kind of game the latest installment in the Cy-Hawk Series would turn out to be.

Two of the most prolific and most talented shooting teams in the nation turned the Iowa women’s basketball team’s clash with Iowa State into a track meet.

In a game that required a breather just to sit down and watch, the energized Hawkeyes overwhelmed and out-lasted their rivals, 76-67.

“Just a really fun in-state game,” Iowa head coach Lisa Bluder said after the win.  “We kept our focus all game, Iowa State pushed hard all game, but we kept our focus and shot the ball very well.”

With both schools putting on a clinic in the fast-break offense and absolutely trigger-happy from beyond the 3-point arc, the game came down to which squad could make the most of every last break. And that was the home team.

“They made the big shots when they needed to, and that credit should go to them,” Iowa State coach Bill Fennelly said. “That’s what good teams do. They’re an outstanding team that played great tonight.”

After just the first 20 minutes, the Hawks and Cyclones combined for a staggering 79 points, including an almost unbelievable 10 combined 3-pointers.

The Hawks finished with 10 from six different shooters.

Freshman Whitney Jennings came out firing from the hip in the first and stayed dangerous all night. The 5-5 Indiana native played without a doubt her best game as a member of the Black and Gold, even stepping in to run the point while senior Sam Logic was still in the game.

She finished with 15 points and a team-high 3 steals.

“I’m from Indiana, and I know the Indiana-Purdue rivalry, so I knew how big of a game this was for us,” Jennings said.

Jennings recorded 2 steals in the fleeting seconds of the game to persevere the win and bragging rights for the Hawkeyes.

“I was just trying to get my hand on the ball at the end,” she said. “Just wanted to get a hand in there and thankfully was able to knock it loose.

Iowa went into the locker room at halftime clinging to a 44-39 lead and the momentum of the home crowd firmly in their back pocket. However, the Cyclones came out swinging in the second.

A pair of huge 3s from ISU senior Nikki Moody pulled the Cyclones within 4 with a little over 15 minutes to play. Luckily for Bluder’s squad, there seemed to be no shortage of offense for the Hawks to fall back on.

Iowa finished with three scorers with double-digit points — Jennings, Ally Disterhoft, and Kali Peschel — as well as eight who played double-digit minutes.

“I always think our bench can be a factor,” Bluder said. “Alexa [Kastanek] and Kali have proved that again tonight. These guys are all shooting the ball really well, so I have a lot of confidence in them.”

Follow @ryanarod on Twitter for news, updates, and analysis about the Iowa women’s basketball team.


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