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AMES — Iowa State women’s basketball coach Bill Fennelly knows how senior night works.
Whether it’s good or bad, every player remembers how the last home game of their careers ended.
Senior forward Seanna Johnson won’t be the only one that remembers her last game in Hilton Coliseum. She poured in a game-high 18 points and 14 rebounds in 38 minutes as Iowa State snagged its fifth win in a row, beating Oklahoma State 61-48 Monday.
“It was really emotional, but to play with (my teammates) one more time on this court really meant a lot,” Johnson said. “To get the ‘W’ meant extra for me. I think we went out there and played hard, and played like we had a chip on our shoulder. For that, I’m really, really proud of our team.”
Johnson is one of only two players in Cyclones (18-11, 9-9) history to surpass 1,500 career points and 1,000 rebounds, but is closing in on some more milestones. Her performance against the Cowgirls (16-13, 6-12) was her 32nd career double-double, tying Chelsea Poppens for the second most in school history.
“It’s kind of like what we’ve watched a lot with Seanna,” Fennelly said. “A lot of times when you’re a senior you don’t have that moment. You’re pretty nervous and you think about everything is the last.
“It was a great way for her to finish an amazing career and a great way for our fans to see her play Seanna Johnson basketball the last game.”
Oklahoma State had a 4-0 lead to start, but didn’t find much success the rest of the way offensively. Iowa State used a 10-0 run to pull ahead and a 19-4 spurt in 7:35 to lead 19-8 after the first quarter.
The Cyclones took an 11-point lead into halftime and led by as many as 23 points in the fourth quarter. Point guard Jadda Buckley had 15 points, eight assists and six rebounds to join Johnson in double figures.
Iowa State has won six of seven games, including three on the road.
“That’s pretty unreal,” Buckley said. “But we can’t let up now. Going to the Big 12 tournament and try to get past that first round, who knows with the postseason yet, that’ll come. But it’s not time to let up now.”
ESPN bracketologists listed Iowa State as a 10 seed in the upcoming NCAA tournament and one of the last four teams in. That spot should be firmed up a little more after Monday.
“I would say (Tuesday) morning I’m going to say I feel pretty good about our chances relative to everybody else,” Fennelly said. “But again, who knows? You trust the process and let it go.
“I think this team has done everything they can and we’ll live with the result, whatever it is.”
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