Just when we thought Texas was going to get hot again as they did in their first five games, Iowa State and the crowd in Ames had other plans.
The game began with Iowa State jumping out to a lead, although ESPN2 somehow found the end of the Sooners game to be worthwhile in taking away the first 4 minutes of the game. From that point on, Texas was playing catch up. Texas tended to use almost all of the shot clock early in the game, which was contributed to their early deficit. The Longhorns went down by as many as 13 points (22-9) with 8:50 left in the first half. Partly to blame was the reliance on the three point shot. In the first half, Osetkowski alone attempted two mediocre looks from behind the arc, contributing to his 1 three-pointer made to 21 three-pointers attempted. For a big like Osetkowski, getting penetration in the paint should be the primary goal.
As the game continued, Texas tried to utilize a 2-3 zone more efficiently, and it puzzled Iowa State for a while. On offense, Texas had a more fast-paced approach, enabling a better field goal percentage in the process. Kerwin Roach helped to gain momentum for the Longhorns through good shot selection and great vision, with a crucial assist for an and-one to get the game within one at 28-27. Although the half ended 31-27 in favor of the Cyclones, Texas had the momentum, but it was primarily fueled by the lack of success for the key players of Iowa State. Marial Shayok had 4 points in the first half, which is not typical for the senior from Ottowa. Michael Jacobson played a huge roll in the first half for Iowa State with 9 points. For Texas, the first half was equally led by Dylan Osetkowski with 7, Kerwin Roach with 7, and Matt Coleman III with 6.
In the second half, the Texas defense kept the 2-3 zone intact. This had some success, but the efforts on defense were at times lackluster at the beginning of the second half. Texas allowed multiple offensive rebounds in single possessions for Iowa State, which killed the time of possession at certain points in the game. There were also sloppy fouls committed by the Longhorns, as Iowa State changed their game plan in favor of picking up the tempo. This speed in tempo allowed for Horton-Tucker of Iowa State to get hot, as he ended with 15 points, a team-high for the Cyclones. Texas did have a hot streak of their own, as they figured out the defensive miscues, and they got their first lead of the game, capitalized by a three-pointer from Coleman to make it 46-45, Texas.
They extended their lead to 3, which only lasted for 1:50. Iowa State responded to this shift by going on a 9-point run. Texas brought it back within 1 at 59-58 to cap a 7-0 run with 1:39 left, but they could not hold Iowa State back. Following a bank shot by Weiler-Babb, Marial Shayok made a clutch deep-jumper to make it 63-58 with 25 seconds left. The final score ended at 65-60.
This was a decent showing for Texas, but they wasted a lot of opportunities. Shayok missed multiple scoring/creation chances, from going 3 for 14 in the field to only having one assist. Lindell Wigginton struggled as well, committing 4 turnovers and scoring just 5 points. The Longhorns did not help themselves with 13 turnovers, and only converted 26.1% of their three-pointers to 38.1% for Iowa State. Among other things, Texas needs to improve on maintaining a fast tempo, minimizing pointless turnovers and not relying on the three-point shot.
Texas hosts Baylor (tied atop the Big 12) on Wednesday at the Frank Erwin Center at 7:00 PM.
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