Iowa State returns from postponement against Oklahoma State

Iowa State guard Rasir Bolton moves up the court with the ball against Texas Tech on Jan. 9 at Hilton Coliseum.

Zane Douglas

The Iowa State men’s basketball team’s last game came on Jan. 9 — a 91-64 blowout loss at home to Texas Tech — but now the team will finally suit up once more for a contest Monday after a brief pause in its season.

Iowa State (2-7, 0-5 Big 12) will host the Oklahoma State Cowboys (9-4, 3-4 Big 12) Monday in a return to action that Iowa State Head Coach Steve Prohm hopes will result in the team’s first conference win.

Both teams could be without key pieces for the game, but even that is hazy.

Iowa State will be missing some regular rotation pieces, but Prohm declined to mention who would be out at media availability Friday. The Cowboys may not see star freshman point guard Cade Cunningham for another game, but Head Coach Mike Boynton wasn’t certain whether he would play.

Cunningham leads the Cowboys with 18.0 points per game and he’s done it shooting 46.0 percent from the field and 38.8 percent from 3-point range. Should Cunningham be out, the Cowboys will rely on other pieces.

The biggest piece is junior guard Isaac Likekele, the second leading scorer, leading the Cowboys in rebounds and assists, and a 54.4 percent shooter.

Likekele however, didn’t answer the call against No. 2 Baylor with Cunningham out as he scored only nine points on 1-8 shooting.

For Iowa State, a Jan. 9 loss to the Red Raiders was the last game before a pause due to COVID-19 cases within the program, postponing the next four games for Iowa State.

No announcement has been made on the status of players, but Iowa State is expecting to play without a full roster Monday — something the Cyclones will have a tough time dealing with.

It was already a bad season for Prohm and co. with the team only managing two wins up to this point, both against nonconference opponents, but the loss of freshman big man Xavier Foster for the year and a multiple-week break resulting in a shorthanded team will be a big test.

The Cyclones have four players averaging double-digit points for them with junior guard Rasir Bolton leading the charge with 14.8 points.

Bolton is also the team leader in assists per game with 4.9 and is second behind redshirt senior forward Solomon Young in rebounds with 4.9 as well.

“I’m excited to get to work and hopefully get back out there,” Prohm said.

The Cyclones and Cowboys will tip off at 8 p.m. Monday and the game will be televised on ESPN2.