Second-seeded Iowa State cruises past South Dakota State

League: NCAA Basketball

Posted on: 22 Mar, 2024 at 04:35 AM

Credit: Samantha Laurey / Argus Leader / USA TODAY NETWORK

Milan Momcilovic scored 19 points to help second-seeded Iowa State post an 82-65 victory over South Dakota State in a first-round East Region matchup on Thursday night in Omaha, Neb.

Tamin Lipsey added 17 points and seven assists for the Cyclones (28-7), who won their fourth straight game and eighth in their last nine. Keshon Gilbert had 15 points and three steals, Curtis Jones scored 11 points and Hason Ward had 10 points for Iowa State.

"Our guys did a good job playing for each other offensively," Iowa State coach T.J. Otzelberger said. "We've been at our best when we've had the offensive balance that we had tonight. I was really pleased with Milan, his aggressiveness and staying on the attack. If we continue to play like this and share the ball like we have been, then good things are going to happen."

Iowa State will face No. 7 Washington State on Saturday.

Zeke Mayo scored 19 points and William Kyle III had 14 for the 15th-seeded Jackrabbits (22-13), who had an eight-game winning streak snapped. Charlie Easley added 11 points for South Dakota State, which committed 15 turnovers.

The Jackrabbits are 0-7 all-time in NCAA Tournament play.

"This is always tough when it ends like this," South Dakota State coach Eric Henderson said. "Our guys, I'm just so proud of the fight that we had and the compete that we had. They never succumbed to their pressure."

The Cyclones, who led by 25 points, shot 57.9 percent, including 11 of 23 from 3-point range.

The Jackrabbits connected on 43.4 percent of their attempts and made 10 of 24 from behind the arc.

South Dakota State trailed by four early in the second half before the Cyclones ripped off 12 consecutive points. Ward capped the burst with a dunk to give Iowa State a 54-38 lead with 16:15 left in the game.

Mayo drained a 3-pointer to end the Jackrabbits' drought of more than four minutes. However, Jones scored five straight points for the Cyclones to push the lead to 18 with 13:28 remaining.

Momcilovic knocked down a jumper to make it 66-46 with 9:16 left, and Iowa State continued to hold a comfortable lead.

Momcilovic scored 12 first-half points as the Cyclones led 40-33 at the break. Mayo scored 11 in the half for South Dakota State, which committed nine turnovers in the first 20 minutes.

Iowa State scored the first seven points and held a 17-3 lead after Ward's dunk with 15:15 left in the half. The lead reached 22-7 on Lipsey's trey with 13:30 remaining.

The Jackrabbits scored 10 straight points and pulled within five on three free throws by Mayo with 10:09 left.

Gilbert's fastbreak dunk make it 29-19 with 8:46 left before South Dakota State trimmed its deficit to seven at the break.

"They fly to the ball like something we haven't seen all season," Mayo said of the Cyclones. "Credit to them. They played fantastic on the defensive end. I mean, it speaks for itself. They're a 2 seed. They came out and played how they have been. They showed up early in that game, and we fought back. We fought really hard, so I'm proud of our guys for doing that."

--Field Level Media