Cyclones pounded 89-66 at The Phog


Photo: Zhenru Zhang/Iowa State Daily

Guard Diante Garrett attempts to pass Tyshawn Taylor during the Iowa State vs. Kansas game on Wednesday, Jan. 12 at Hilton Coliseum. Garrett contributed 27 points to the Cyclones 84-79 loss to the Jayhawks.

Chris Cuellar

LAWRENCE, Kan. — The eerie sounds of Allen Fieldhouse’s “Rock Chalk,” song echoed through the blue-clad Kansas fans with 90 seconds left in the game on Saturday, a tune that indicates the Jayhawks (24-1, 9-1 Big 12) have wrapped up another win.

It could have started much sooner.

Iowa State struggled from the start with the the No. 2 Jayhawks, and the Cyclones (14-11, 1-9 Big 12) lost the game 89-66, lost senior forward Jamie Vanderbeken to an ankle injury and extended their current losing streak to seven games.

“This Kansas team is great, especially the way they’re playing right now,” said ISU coach Fred Hoiberg. “They’re big, they’re strong, they’re physical, they shoot the heck out of it. Other than that they’re not that great.”

The young Cyclones visited historic Phog Allen Fieldhouse working to break their losing skid, but the Jayhawks used an early 22-4 run to open a lead that wouldn’t change hands.

“We’ve got a lot of weapons, a lot of guys that can score and make shots,” said KU guard Tyshawn Taylor. “We’re a real unselfish team, we swing the ball around so everybody gets touches and most the shots we’re taking are good shots.”

Kansas, a potential No. 1 team in the country, used the type of execution that KU fans have become used to.

Marcus Morris led the Jayhawks with 16 points and 11 rebounds on 7-of-12 shooting, with his brother Markieff finishing just two points behind. The brothers have dominated Iowa State this season, just another duo with career days against the struggling Cyclones.

“We’re having lots of guys going off for big games against us and I don’t think it’s a coincidence that every team has a guy that has a great shooting night against us,” said ISU guard Scott Christopherson. “We need to impose a little bit more of our defensive will.”

Vanderbeken went down around the eight-minute mark of the first half, falling after a loose ball and rebound attempt. Iowa State’s 6-foot-11-inch senior rolled his ankle, and the team’s doctor said he was likely doubtful for the Cyclones’ next game.

“This is more than a little ache and pain, I’ve done this I don’t know how many times,” Vanderbeken said. “We’ll see how swollen it is, get treatment, pretty much just wait and see.”

With Vanderbeken out, the Cyclones had to rely on a small lineup of four guards and usually just one forward against the already-larger Jayhawks.

“We needed to come early in this game and take care of the basketball — we had turnovers early that led to fast break baskets and got their confidence going,” Hoiberg said. “They’re clicking on all-cylinders right now.”

Kansas came away with a five-point win against Iowa State just a month ago with lots of support on the inside from the Morrises. While the Jayhawks got that support again on Saturday, the team’s 51.6 percent shooting put it away.

“They were knocking down shots, but we’re letting teams be too comfortable right now,” Christopherson said. “When you let them be comfortable, guys shoot high percentages and they make shots they probably wouldn’t make if you got into them a little earlier in the game.”

Iowa State was led in scoring by Christopherson, who finished with 16 points including four three-pointers. Three other Cyclones finished in double-digits scoring, including senior guard Diante Garrett, who was pulled over to the bench for the last time at Allen Fieldhouse with five minutes left in the game.

The Cyclones are hurting, having lost eight of their last nine games, but even a squad with current success can have some perspective.

“He’s struggling,” said KU coach Bill Self of Hoiberg. “My first year we lost 18 in a row. The thing about it is, we weren’t in the games. They’re in the games. They have no margin for error from an injury standpoint. When you don’t have a lot of depth that definitely puts pressure on you.”

Freshman forward Calvin Godfrey is expected to return for Iowa State’s next game at Texas A&M after serving a three game suspension.

Christopherson tied former ISU guard Mike Taylor’s record of consecutive games with a three-pointer. The junior has now hit a three in 27 consecutive games.