Iowa State advances to WNIT championship with comeback win over Auburn


Senior guard Bridget Carleton drives the ball down the court during the game against Auburn at Hilton Coliseum on Nov. 13.

Spencer Suckow

Iowa State women’s basketball advanced to the finals of the WNIT after a come-from-behind win over Auburn on Tuesday night, 67-64.

Iowa State started off the game ice cold from the field, shooting 3-for-17 from the field and 1-for-10 from beyond the arc. Six of the team’s 13 points came from the free throw line, where the Cyclones still only shot 6-of-10. Still, Iowa State remained in striking distance of Auburn, trailing only 18-13 at the break.

Shooting improved for the Cyclones slightly in the second, but Auburn grew their lead to 38-29 at the half thanks to a 52 percent shooting percentage in the half. Of the Cyclones nine field goals, four came from senior forward Meredith Burkhall, who led Iowa State with eight points in the half.

Iowa State came out firing to start the second half however, pulling to within two of the Tigers thanks to a 10-0 run that brought the score to 41-39. Iowa State eventually tied the game with a buzzer-beating three pointer from sophomore forward Madison Wise, which left the game at 45-45 heading into the fourth.

From there, it looked as if Iowa State would ride that momentum to a double-digit win. The Cyclones started the fourth quarter on an 8-0 run, led by primarily by Wise and freshman Ashley Joens. Iowa State eventually turned this into a a 64-54 lead late in the game.

However, Auburn stormed back with 10 straight points in one minute and 13 seconds to tie things up at 64 with with 41 seconds left. With 8.6 seconds left, however, senior guard Bridget Carleton scored a go-ahead layup to put the Cyclones up by two. Carleton then came up with a key block with 2.7 seconds left to preserve a 67-64 win for Iowa State.

Leading the way statistically for Iowa State was Carleton, who nearly got a triple double with 15 points, 13 rebounds and eight assists. Joens also had a career high 18 points on 5-of-12 shooting from three, and Wise pitched in 13 points and seven rebounds.

Next up for the Cyclones will be the WNIT championship on Sunday, where the team will play the winner of No. 19 Marquette and No. 24 Miami at 3:30 p.m. at Hilton Coliseum.