Cyclones pull out win against Jayhawks despite playing ‘disinterested’

Seanna Johnson, junior guard, scored 10 points and 10 total rebounds at the women’s basketball game against University of Kansas on Jan. 9 at Hilton Coliseum. ISU won 65-49.

Luke Manderfeld

The ISU women’s basketball team left Saturday night’s game against Kansas with a 65-49 victory, but the team, or at least ISU coach Bill Fennelly, didn’t leave Hilton Coliseum with pleasant feelings.

Despite the double-digit margin of victory, Fennelly wasn’t happy with his team’s performance. After a rough 21-point loss to Texas on Wednesday, Fennelly expected his team to come out with some extra fire against Kansas.  

“The biggest message is you can’t just decide what night you want to show up,” Fennelly said. “I don’t know that they weren’t happy with the way they played. I wasn’t happy with the way they played.”

Fennelly’s displeasure didn’t pop out on the stat sheet. Iowa State shot 43.6 percent from the field and 6-of-14 from 3-point range.

Iowa State also edged out the Jawyhawks on the boards, 40-31. The Cyclones won in almost every facet of the game. 

But, for Fennelly, it didn’t come down to statistics. It came down to Iowa State’s effort throughout the 40 minutes. 

“We were disinterested for a lot of the time — nothing against Kansas,” Fennelly said. “We’ve got to be more engaged from start to finish. That’s the kind of the team that we need to be. We were not that way tonight, you could tell that tonight. We were trying everything we could to get that out of them.”

After the game, Fennelly told the players that he wanted to see more from them against Kansas. He thought the players weren’t as upset as him with the loss, but they didn’t show it after the game. 

“After the game, coach Fennelly was a little disappointed,” said Bryanna Fernstrom. “Because after the Texas game, we should have come out with a little more effort and excitement. Our fans deserve for us to play harder than that. I think we could have beat them by more.”

No matter the result that it thought it should’ve had, the team is now a week away from its next game. The Cyclones will travel to Lubbock, Texas, to take on Texas Tech. 

Over the course of the week, Fennelly will make sure that the team shows up with a bigger desire to play.

“Sometimes the best way to teach is after a win instead of a loss,” Fennelly said. “I hope they meant what they said.”