AMES – The detail that Iowa State coach Matt Campbell constantly preaches about was absent for the first half of Iowa State’s 20-16 loss at West Virginia.
Iowa State quarterback Kyle Kempt threw an interception, tight end Chase Allen was called for an offensive pass interference and Iowa State’s secondary gave up two 50+ pass plays. All within the first 20 minutes of the game.
“We have to be effective in situational football – I’ve said that from the start of the season,” Campbell said in the post-game press conference. “We can’t put ourselves in tough situations and in the first half we did a couple of times.”
West Virginia put up 20 points in the first 23:47 of the game.
At the half it was 20-3 and it looked like Iowa State, which went undefeated in the month of October, beating two top-5 teams, was going to get brought back down to earth.
But Iowa State got its details back in order, for the most part, and tried to come back in the game.
“I thought situationally we were a lot better in the second half, both offensively and defensively,” Campbell said. “I give so much credit to our kids. They just kept fighting and kept playing.”
The Cyclones set the tone for what the rest of the game would be in the first drive of the second half. Iowa State took advantage of a West Virginia facemask penalty and eventually Kempt found start receiver Allen Lazard in the end zone to cut West Virginia’s lead to 20-10.
Iowa State’s defense largely played mistake-free football in the second half. It contained West Virginia running back Justin Crawford and didn’t allow the deep ball.
That allowed the Cyclones to get the chances it needed to come back in the game.
Iowa State had an opportunity to score another touchdown later in the third quarter when the Cyclones were aided by 30 yards of penalties on one play. Iowa State eventually found itself on the one-yard line.
The Cyclones tried a running play with Kyle Kempt and David Montgomery but neither was successful. Campbell elected to kick a field goal from the one.
“I wanted to go possession by possession and I thought we were really coming back in the game,” Campbell said. “I wanted to give ourselves a chance to win a football game. I thought we were playing really well on defense and get the ball back and give ourselves a chance to win it.”
History repeated itself in the fourth quarter. Iowa State drove the ball down to the seven, but again got hung up on third down. Iowa State kicked another field goal.
Cornerback D’Andre Payne gave Iowa State one last chance, intercepting a pass in the end zone in the fourth quarter. However, Iowa State failed to do anything with it, turning the ball over on downs. That was essentially the end of the game.
“This is one of the toughest group of kids I’ve been around,” Campbell said. “They kept fighting. You have to play with more detail early in the game than what we did and you let a good team take advantage of lack of detail from our end in the first half. We got behind and had to use a lot of energy and effort just to give yourself a shot at the game.”
Campbell credited the seniors in the locker room the for the half time turnaround. He said if his team didn’t make corrections, they probably would’ve gotten blown out.
“I said this when we won and I’ll say it after a tough loss, it’s a marathon, it’s not a sprint,” Campbell said. “It’s your ability to learn and then you have an opportunity at the end of all of this to sit down and say, ‘Who are we really and what can we accomplish.’ That’s just part of it. A lot of it is learning and growing and certainly there’s a lot to learn from. It’s just a matter of, will you?”
MASON CITY – NIACC women’s basketball coach Todd Ciochetto had a few goals for the ninth-rated Lady Trojans in their second game of the Konigsmark Klassic basketball tournament on Saturday.
First, of course, was to secure a second victory to start the season, a goal which NIACC accomplished handily with a 90-61 victory over Bay College.
A second goal for the Lady Trojans was to work on the three-point shooting phase of the offense, a part of the offense that looks like it will be a strength going forward.
NIACC connected on 10 three-pointers in the first quarter alone and made 17-of-51 from long range in the game.
“We were hot in that first quarter,” Ciochetto said. “We know we can play but we can’t take things for granted.”
Possibly the most important result of NIACC’s long-range shooting was that Ciochetto found out that he has a lot of options from beyond the arc.
Twelve different Lady Trojans made three-point shots during the game.
The final goal was to get plenty of game experience for the freshmen, and again, that was successful as 12 Lady Trojans played at least 10 minutes in the game.
Despite the player rotation, team chemistry was not much of an issue for NIACC as the Lady Trojans put up 90 points or more for the second straight night.
Syley Vesel, a freshman from Austin, Minn., made four 3-pointers and finished with 17 points and five rebounds to lead NIACC.
Taylor Laabs, one of the few sophomores on the squad, finished with 12 points, four assists and two steals, Mikayla Homola had 10 points.
Morgan Frank, another freshman, added nine points and five rebounds.
NIACC (2-0) returns to the court on Friday when it travels to Iowa Falls for a two-day tournament at Ellsworth.
The Lady Trojans face Milwaukee Area Tech at 2 p.m. on Friday and Harper College at 11 a.m. on Saturday.
MASON CITY – Nick Wurm may feel a little extra pressure this season when he takes the court for the NIACC basketball team.
The sophomore from Adelaide South Australia is the only member of the Trojans who saw appreciable court time last season, and as such, Nick is looked to for the veteran leadership that only a veteran could provide.
“It’s a different role,” Wurm said. “I’m comfortable taking these guys under my wing.”
Wurm did just that on Saturday as NIACC overcame a spirited effort from Bay College and pulled off a 93-87 win in overtime on the final day of the Konigsmark Klassic basketball tournament.
Wurm, who netted a team-high 28 points, had eight in an overtime session that saw the Trojans outscored the Norse 17-11.
After a slow start, NIACC seemed poised to run away with the game, but Bay College trimmed a 15-point first-half Trojan lead to just four by halftime.
The Norse continued their run early in the second half, but after the 12-minute mark, neither team was able to build a lead of more than five points.
Bay took a one-point lead on a free throw by Kobi Lumsden-Barnes with 10.6 seconds remaining in regulation, but Wurm tied it with a free-throw with 4.1 seconds left to force the overtime period.
“The kids showed a lot of tenacity,” NIACC coach Mark Mohl said. “We have tremendous kids, and tremendous kids play hard.”
In addition to his 28 points, Wurm also had a team-high four assists.
Orrington Hamilton, a freshman guard from Naples, Fla., added 14 points, including a huge three-point shot in overtime and a pair of free throws with less than a minute remaining.
Hollis Hardwick had 10 points and seven rebounds off the bench.
Raymond Harding had nine points – all in the second half – and Jaycob Payne had seven points and 10 rebounds for NIACC>
Mac Skogen, a freshman from Mason City, had six points and three rebounds off the bench.
Dre’ Tuominen led Bay College with 28 points, 23 of which came after halftime.
While the 2-0 start is exactly what Mohl was looking for, the veteran coach knows that his team still has some growing to do in the early part of the season.
“We’ve got to get better offensively,” Mohl said. “Our motion offense needs to improve and we have to work on the little things.”
NIACC (2-0) faces Milwaukee Area Tech on Friday at Ellswort.
MASON CITY — Early on this season, the Mohawk Hockey Club has had a few different hurdles to clear.
Injuries have forced some young guys on to the varsity roster, and after a season-opening series last week at Waterloo, the Mohawks learned that a slow start would likely derail anything they're trying to do.
The Mohawks' defense helped it hang around in the opening period Saturday vs. Kansas City, but the offense was never able to find the back of the net in a 4-0 defeat.
“We just really had four mental breakdowns,” Mohawk Hockey Club co-coach Rich Gores said. “We kept with them all game and we had a lot of opportunities, but I think the big difference was that they capitalized and we didn’t. When you look at the shot count, we just couldn’t put the puck in the net.”
The Mohawks and Jets played to a scoreless first period with Mohawk Hockey Club goalie Josh Thilges provided the only real highlights on a couple of nice saves.
Things got away from the Mohawks in the second period as the Jets lit the lamp three times on goals by Landon Kehl, Nick Spolec and Tommy Donovan to put the Mohawks in a 3-0 hole.
The Mohawks had their chances through the period though, including on a couple of breakaways by Zach Jimenez, but Kansas City goalie Ryan Raff stood tall.
Kansas City added one more goal in the third period to go on to the four-goal victory.
The Mohawks finished with a 37-26 shot advantage.
“We had a great chances, and again, when we have those we have to score,” Gores said. “If we score, that changes the complexion of the game.”
Josh Thilges stopped 25 of the 29 shots he faced in goal for the Mohawks.
The teams will meet again Sunday at 11 a.m.