From Iowa State communications staff
AMES, Iowa – Iowa State’s Chelsea Poppens notched her second-straight double-double (19 points/13 rebounds) and the Cyclones stifled Buffalo to just 14 second-half points en route to a 65-45 victory Friday night in Hilton Coliseum.
Iowa State improves to 9-2 on the year and the win clinched the Cyclone Challenge tournament title. ISU is now 31-0 in regular-season hosted tournaments under Bill Fennelly. The win was the 600th in Iowa State women’s basketball history.
Poppens had another monster game, as the junior averaged 16.5 points and 14.5 rebounds in the two tournament games to earn Cyclone Challenge MVP honors. Poppens also recorded a career-high four steals tonight.
Buffalo was up by as many as seven points in the first half thanks to hot shooting from beyond the arc. The Bulls led 24-17 after Nicki Hopkins and Margeaux Gupilan connected on a pair of treys with 6:52 left in the first.
The Cyclones slowly started to chip away at the lead, tying the game at 26-26 after Poppens scored four points in a 9-2 Iowa State run. Lauren Mansfield then hit two 3-pointers in the final two minutes of the opening period to give the Cyclones a 34-31 lead at the break.
Buffalo made 7-of-17 from beyond the arc in the first half, while the Cyclones were 5-of-10 from downtown.
Iowa State opened up a 12-point lead (49-37) with 11:09 left in the game, as the Cyclones took advantage of a six-minute scoring drought by the Bulls. Five minutes later Iowa State was sitting comfortably with a 62-39 lead, as Iowa State held the Bulls to just eight points in the first 15 minutes of the second half.
Mansfield finished the game with 10 points and handed out a season-high nine assists.
Hallie Christofferson was also named to the all-tournament team. She had 10 points and six rebounds on the evening.
The Cyclones forced 21 turnovers and held the Bulls to 28.6 shooting (6-21 FG) in the second half.
Iowa State opens Big 12 play on Wednesday at Oklahoma with a 7 p.m. CST tip off.