Las Vegas, NV (Sports Network) - A pair of undefeated squads will square off
in the semifinals of the Global Sports Classic at the Thomas & Mack Center in
Las Vegas on Friday night when the Iowa State Cyclones take on the 22nd-ranked
The winner will go on to play either Oregon or UNLV in the championship game,
with the losers facing off for third place.
Iowa State won both of its early-round games in this tournament, knocking off
North Carolina A&T (86-57) and Campbell (88-68) en route to the semifinal
game. Add that to a pair of blowout wins to start the season over Southern
(82-59) and Alabama A&M (98-40) and the Cyclones are now 4-0.
Cincinnati has also gotten out to a 4-0 to start the season, with each win
coming at home. First the Bearcats took care of Tennesseee-Martin (80-57) and
Mississippi Valley State (102-60) before entering the preliminary rounds of
the tournament, where they continued to rack up easy wins over NC A&T (93-39)
and Campbell (91-72).
Cincinnati has won two of the three all-time meetings between the squads, with
the last two also coming at neutral sites.
Iowa State's first four games have been nothing short of dominant. It is
shooting nearly 49.6 percent from the floor, while its opponents are making
just 32.7 of their field goals, and its scoring margin (plus-32.5) shows that
it hasn't broken a sweat yet. In the Cyclones' latest 29-point win over NC
A&T, Tyrus McGee logged 25 minutes from off the bench and led the way with 16
points, hitting four of the team's 11 three-pointers in the process. Will
Clyburn and Georges Niang added 14 points apiece, and Melvin Ejim just missed
a double-double with eight points and 10 rebounds. On the season, Clyburn puts
up a team-best 15.0 ppg and he's tied with Ejim (11.0 ppg) as the top
rebounder with 8.3 rpg. Niang (14.3 ppg, 7.0 rpg) and McGee (13.8 ppg) are
consistent contributors to the balanced scoring attack, and Korie Lucious (7.0
ppg) takes advantage of all the weapons around him by dishing out 5.5 apg.
Amazingly enough, Cincinnati has actually been more impressive than the
Cyclones, as it is shooting 51.3 percent from the field (including 42.2
percent from three-point range) while outscoring its opponents by an
incredible plus-34.5 margin. The Bearcats made good on half their field goal
attempts (32-of-64) in their latest win over Campbell, with Cashmere Wright
doing the majority of the damage with 28 points on 8-of-14 from the field and
8-of-10 from the free throw line. Wright also swiped five steals, and he's
averaging 17.0 ppg in the early going. JaQuon Parker tallied 21 points and
eight boards, while Sean Kilpatrick logged 15 points and 10 boards. Kilpatrick
(19.5 ppg) and Parker (11.3 ppg) are the only other Bearcats to average double
figures, but six others average between 5.0 and 7.3 rpg.
The Sports Network