Beating Huskers for third time is Cyclones’ task

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Most coaches would suggest that defeating a team three times in a row is a big challenge. Of the eight match-ups in the first rounds of the Big 12 Women’s and Men’s Basketball Championships, five of the pairings will be third-time meetings.

In just two – Iowa State vs. Nebraska and Kansas vs. Colorado in the women’s tourney – of the match-ups did one team sweep the season series. The Cyclones and Jayhawks both went 2-0 against their first-round foe.

So, Bill Fennelly and his staff have been working this week on devising a strategy to beat the Huskers for the third straight time. Nebraska and Iowa State played twice within a 15-day period earlier this season.

Kelsey Bolte, like she has all season, was a constant for Iowa State. She averaged 24 ppg against Nebraska. The surprise contributor was Anna Prins, who registered a "double-double" in the first meeting (18 points, career-best 11 rebounds) and then scored a career-high 23 points in the second game.

In four halves of action between ISU and NU, the Cyclones’ key was shooting. They hit 32 percent in the first half of the first game and trailed by five a halftime. In the other three halves, Iowa State made 58 percent from the field to gain traction.

The question today is whether the Cyclones can end their conference rivalry with Nebraska on a three-game series winning streak? Tip-off is at 1:30 p.m. in Kansas City.

Reader feedback is welcome at 2minutetimeout@iastate.edu. You can also follow me on Twitter at: twitter.com/SteveMalchow

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