Iowa State rides Johnson surge to 76-64 win over Albany
AMES, Iowa (AP)—Wesley Johnson scored 15 straight points early in the second half, including four straight 3-pointers, and finished with 20 to lead Iowa State past Albany 76-64 on Sunday night.
Jiri Hubalek added 22 points and 10 rebounds and Rahshon Clark scored 12 for the Cyclones (8-5), who have won five of their last six. But they were struggling against the Great Danes (5-7) until Johnson got hot.
The Cyclones led just 34-32 when Bryan Petersen hit a 3 from the top of the key. After Albany’s Brian Connelly made a free throw, Johnson took over.
He hit two 3s from the right side and another from the left corner. Then he converted an old-fashioned three-point play off a leaning shot before draining a 3 from the left corner, giving the Cyclones a 52-33 lead.
Albany four times cut the lead to eight, but Iowa State responded each time to quickly get the lead back to double digits.
Brian Lillis led Albany with 13 points and Brent Wilson scored 12. Both starred at Iowa high schools, Lillis at West Des Moines Dowling and Wilson at Cedar Rapids Prairie.
Johnson, who sat out the final 15:55 of the first half after getting two fouls, made his first six shots and finished 6-for-8, including 5-for-7 from 3-point range.
Working inside, Hubalek went 5-for-8 from the field and 12-for-14 at the line.
Albany trailed the first 7 minutes, then pulled ahead 14-11 on Jon Iati’s 3-pointer and Josh Martin’s driving shot. The Great Danes led 18-14 after two straight baskets by Lillis, the first a layup on which he crashed into the press table at the end of the court, the second a bank shot high off the glass.
With Albany leading 24-20, Iowa State closed the half with a 12-4 run that included eight points by Hubalek to go up 32-28. Albany’s only basket during the final 4:50 of the half was a 3 by Iati that tied it at 28.