Izaiah Brockington Alabama State 2021

Iowa State Izaiah Brockington goes up for a layup through contact against Alabama State on Nov. 16.

It's a Happy Thanksgiving for Cyclone men's basketball.

The Cyclones joined the field of No. 25 Xavier Musketeers, No.9 Memphis Tigers and Virginia Tech at the NIT Season Tip-Off on Wednesday in Brooklyn, N.Y and came out with a confidence-building victory to start the T.J. Otzelberger era off 5-0.

Iowa State took down No. 25 Xavier on Wednesday 82-70, moving the team to 5-0 on the season. The win is the program's first win over a top-25 opponent since Dec 8, 2019 vs No.16 Seton Hall.

Iowa State started the Thanksgiving holiday break tournament with its defense to start the night.

George Conditt was the lead enforcer on both ends for the Cyclones in the opening five minutes of action, with the big-man putting up six points and two rebounds.

Xavier came into the night averaging 14 turnovers a game and the Cyclones forced the Musketeers into early pressure. Xavier had eight turnovers at halftime and started the first period slow on offense. Xavier was shooting 23 percent from the field in the first nine minutes of the first half, only to bump back up to 48.6 percent at the break.

Xavier led 39-38 at halftime. But that didn't last much longer.

Tyrese Hunter led the Cyclones with 11 points at halftime and was 3-3 from three.

Iowa State came out of the half with no sluggishness, retaking the lead in a hurry on a 9-0 run to take a 47-39 lead. The momentum kept up for the Cyclones, who built a 62-50 lead with just over eight minutes gone by in the second half.

Izaiah Brockington heated up in the second half, scoring 13 points on 6-7 shooting in the first eight minutes of the half. Hunter kept the pressure up on the defensive ends, recording four steals in the second half to give him a new season and career-high on the night. And he kept stuffing the stat sheet (Thanksgiving pun intended).

The Penn State transfer had 23 points on 10-13 shooting in the second half, including 3-5 from deep.

Brockington finished with a career-high and season-high 30 points, 23 coming in the second half. Hunter matched a career-high with 19 points, along with four rebounds and a career-high five steals. Brockington became the first Cyclone to score 30 points since Lindell Wigginton on Jan 13, 2018.

Conditt fouled out of the game, but not before putting up 10 points, five rebounds, two steals and two assists.

Iowa State will take on the winner of No. 9 Memphis and Virginia Tech on Friday. Tip-off time has not been determined.

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