AMES — Iowa State point guard Emily Ryan had a career night Tuesday against Drake.
The freshman had 20 points and 10 assists in Iowa State’s 85-67 win.
Ryan’s previous career highs in both points and assists were eight. Her performance against the Bulldogs was nearly flawless.
She was 3 of 3 from inside the arc, 5 for 7 from 3-point range and hit both free-throw attempts. She also pulled down four rebounds, had two steals and blocked a shot.
“It’s really satisfying because a lot of the offense does start with the point guard, so when things go right, it’s really rewarding,” Ryan said.
And like a true point guard, her immediate thought was of her teammates.
“I was really happy to see everyone hitting shots tonight,” Ryan said.
The Cyclones ( had balanced scoring throughout the lineup. Five players, including Ryan, had at least 13 points.
That balance is important for the Cyclones to help take some of the pressure and load off of Ashley Joens.
Joens had 17 points on 7-for-14 shooting and five rebounds.
Kristin Scott had 13 points on 5-of-8 shooting and five rebounds as well. Neither Scott nor Joens played in the fourth quarter against Drake (.
Aubrey Joens, Ashley’s younger sister, also had a career-high with 13 points. She shot 3 of 8 from 3-point range.
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Sophomore Maggie Espenmiller-McGraw continued her impressive play after missing Iowa State’s first seven games due to injury, scoring 14 points on 4-for-7 shooting.
“It wasn’t Lexi (Donarski) and it wasn’t Kylie (Feuerbach), but it was Maggie, Aubrey and Emily Ryan,” Iowa State coach Bill Fennelly said. “The other night it was Lexi and Kylie. Ashley and Kristin are going to do Ashley and Kristin things but when you get that kind of balance, we’re hard to guard.
“Ashley and Kristin are going to score and get their points. If we can get three of the other five, and eventually Maddie Wise, then that balances our team out. Emily Ryan hasn’t shot the ball great and tonight she gets 20.”
Before the game, Fennelly told his team that they’d need to score 100 to beat the high-powered Bulldogs, who average 80 points per game. The Cyclones were on pace for over 100, scoring 80 through three quarters before pulling the starters. Iowa State netted 17 3-pointers through three quarters. The school record for 3-pointers in a game is 18 but the Cyclones were unable to make one in the fourth quarter.
But the offense wasn’t the impressive part for Fennelly.
Iowa State held Drake to just 42 points through three quarters.
“The thing that impressed me is that we defended so well,” Fennelly said.
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