AMES — The Iowa State women’s basketball season is nearly at its end. Outside of the Big 12 tournament in Oklahoma City, the Cyclones don’t harbor many postseason expectations at 13-16.
No. 7 seed Iowa State (13-16, 7-11 Big 12) plays 10th-seeded Texas Tech (7-22, 1-17) in Friday’s first round. The Cyclones swept the regular-season matchup between the schools, but head coach Bill Fennelly said the number to the left of the school (the seed) doesn’t seem to matter as much in conference tournaments, unless it’s a total mismatch.
“Like we tell our kids, at some point, your season is going to end,” Fennelly said. “You hope it ends in a way that you’re proud of your effort and the way you played. Hopefully Friday night we’ll have played well and do the things we need to do to continue playing.”
When Iowa State beat Texas Tech both times earlier this season, the Cyclones had trouble keeping the Red Raiders out of the paint and shutting the door on them.
“The games were eerily the same,” Fennelly said. “I thought we played great in the first half and not so good in the second half. They kept playing and we couldn’t knock them out.”
While Iowa State likely won’t got to the NCAA tournament, every game still matters because of the youth on the team.
Iowa State only graduates two players in Emily Durr and Claire Ricketts. At times this season, Iowa State has started three freshmen.
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“I think (these extra games) are critical,” Fennelly said. “Especially when it’s a one-and-done situation. You can have great off-season workouts and that kind of stuff, but nothing simulates actual game-time experience. The more experience you get, the better. It doesn’t matter who you’re playing against, you can’t simulate that.”
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