• February 27, 2015

Iowa State Daily

Cyclones seek fourth straight win in Cy-Hawk series

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Posted: Friday, December 7, 2012 5:00 am

Korie Lucious hasn’t had the chance to experience it on the court yet, but he has heard about it every single day.

It seems like all the time he hears about the Cyclones beating the Hawkeyes or vice versa. Now he’s ready to leave his mark on the historic Cy-Hawk rivalry.

"Every day," Lucious said, "Football, basketball — no matter what the sport is — everyone talks about Iowa State wanting to beat Iowa or Iowa wanting to beat Iowa State, so it’s going to be intense."

The Hawkeyes lead the all-time series 42-22, but Iowa State has won the last three-straight, including the last game in Iowa City, winning 75-72.

Lucious is one of four players with major playing time — along with Will Clyburn and freshmen Georges Niang and Naz Long — who haven’t experienced a Cy-Hawk game yet. ISU coach Fred Hoiberg said there is the possibility the team depends on those players that have experienced the atmosphere before.

“We’ve got a couple guys that have played at Iowa City on this team,” Hoiberg said, “We’re going to lean on those guys, and our freshmen are getting better. It’s going to be important for everybody on our roster.”

It’s well-known within the ISU camp that the Hawkeyes' program is on the upswing along with Iowa State. The Hawkeyes are 7-2 this season, led by Roy Marble, a 6-foot-6 forward who averages about 14 points per game along with four rebounds and three assists.

Iowa also has Aaron White, another forward that Hoiberg expects to be a load underneath. The 6-foot-8 forward is averaging 13 points per game with six rebounds to add to that. His .538 field-goal percentage is one of the best in the Big Ten.

The focus in practice leading up to the game in Iowa City is still turnovers. Although Lucious led Iowa State with 17 points against Florida Gulf Coast, he and his coach still believe his assist-to-turnover ratio isn’t where it needs to be.

Lucious has improved from what was a dead-even ratio early in the year to dish out nine assists in back-to-back games. The team’s ratio is at a dead-even 130-130 right now, and Hoiberg has said if his players keep turning it over, they won’t be able to accomplish what they want in the hostile environment of Iowa City.

“We’ve got to cut that down, especially if we want to compete on Friday,” Hoiberg said of his team giving the ball away. “If we want to have a chance, we can’t turn the ball over 20 times. We’ll get blown out if we do that. We have to be selective with it, but certainly we’ll try to get out and get some shots in transition.”

Even though his team isn’t where he wants it to be in terms of passing the ball, Hoiberg said it is at its best getting up and down the court with the ball. 

“We’ve always liked doing transition 3's, and if we get the ball to one of our shooters, we’re going to take them,” Hoiberg said, “We want to run, but we want to be smart with it. You want to get out and take good shots in transition.”

Against Florida Gulf Coast, a big chunk of the Cyclones' 13 3-pointers on a 52-percent clip came in transition. A career-high five came from Lucious.

Iowa State’s designated defensive stopper, Chris Babb, offered his two cents about how Iowa State will need to handle the revamped Hawkeye team playing in Iowa City.

“Playing hard for all 40 minutes and executing offensively and defensively,” Babb said. “We made shots and moved the ball well. We did that last night in spurts; we’ve just got to put together a full 40 minutes on Friday.”

Tipoff starts at 7 p.m. and the game will be shown on the Big Ten Network.

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