One of Fred Hoiberg’s concerns this season has been the slow starts by his team.
In the opening five games, the Cyclones never really got out the gates great.
The score at the 10-minute mark in those five games was always tight: Oakland (ISU led 19-18), Georgia State (17-13), Alabama (21-21), Maryland (ISU trailed 19-23) and Lamar (15-15).
In a recent game vs. 18th-ranked Arkansas, the Cyclones jumped out to leads of 12-4 and 22-9. The Cyclones got to the 10:00 milepost with a 29-20 lead.
Hoiberg was pleased after the Arkansas game. He hoped that type of start would be duplicated Tuesday night.
ISU bolted to a 17-4 lead and boosted the margin to 17 points (26-9) with 10 minutes left in the opening half.
“I was really proud of how they came out of the locker room and jumped on them (UMKC) early,”
Hoiberg said. “That’s something we really stressed at practice. Take that momentum we had from the Arkansas game and try to duplicate it tonight.”
All then is well in Cyclone-land, right? Not really.
“(I was) disappointed how we closed out the half,” Hoiberg said. “Built a 21-point lead and, then, let them outscore us 7-0. Not the best second half for us, so we’ve got some things to work on.”
The Cyclones have had games with good beginnings, good middles and good ends. Iowa State travels to Iowa at the end of the week and it will take a good beginning, middle and end to win in its first true road game of the season.