Jaren Holmes scored 23 points — including 10 straight for his team during a key second-half stretch — and Gabe Kalscheur added 19 points to boost No. 12 Iowa State to an 80-76 victory against visiting No. 5 Kansas State on Tuesday night in Ames, Iowa.
Holmes had 18 points after halftime and was 8-for-11 from the floor overall to help the Cyclones finish at 57.1 percent. Iowa State (15-4, 6-2 Big 12) led by 10 points midway through the second half before holding on.
Ismael Massoud’s 3-pointer brought the Wildcats within two points with 4:06 to go, but the Cyclones found enough answers down the stretch. Caleb Grill hit a pair of free throws with 10 seconds left to give the Cyclones a five-point lead, but fouled the Wildcats’ Markquis Nowell on a 3-pointer moments later, and Nowell made all three free throws to close within 78-76.
A pair of Holmes free throws with one second left, however, accounted for the final margin.
Osun Osunniyi scored 16 points for Iowa State while Tamin Lipsey had 10 points and a team-best six rebounds. Holmes added seven assists.
Nowell paced Kansas State with 23 points, including a 4-for-5 effort from deep. Cam Carter (15 points), Keyontae Johnson (15) and Massoud (13) followed in double figures. Johnson added 10 rebounds to notch a double-double, and Nowell was just shy of the feat, collecting nine assists.
The Wildcats, who had matched the program’s best 19-game start since 1961-62, have lost each of their games this season on the road. Kansas State (17-3, 6-2) led by four points in the first half but didn’t have the advantage after holding a 40-39 edge with 16:52 remaining.
Kansas State weathered slow starts from some of its usual suspects to take a 33-31 lead into the break. While Carter scored 13 first-half points — including a quick nine before the initial media timeout — Nowell and Johnson combined for just 10 points on 4-for-13 shooting.
Grill, who sustained a lower-back injury Saturday in a loss at Oklahoma State, was 1-for-4 from the floor in 25 minutes. He left the floor wincing and holding his back midway through the second half, but he returned in the closing minutes.
–Field Level Media