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Wigginton leads Iowa State past Northern Illinois 94-80

AMES, Iowa (AP) Freshman Lindell Wigginton might already be Iowa State's most talented player.

Whether that's a good or bad thing will be determined in the weeks to come. But Wigginton's rapidly-emerging game proved crucial on Monday night for a team needing to overcome yet another sluggish start.

Wigginton poured in a season-high 28 points and Iowa State rallied to beat Northern Illinois 94-80 for its fifth straight win.

''He's a talented kid. He can really score,'' Iowa State coach Steve Prohm said of Wigginton, the rare five-star recruit to play for the Cyclones. ''I want to play him loose and free, but I also want him fundamentally sound as well. If he can do that and continue to get better, he's got a chance to be a very good player.''

Senior Donovan Jackson added 24 points with six 3-pointers and Nick Weiler-Babb had 12 points and 11 assists for the Cyclones (5-2), who overcame depth issues to outscore the Huskies 58-42 in the second half.

Iowa State certainly looked rusty after a nine-day layoff, falling behind 38-36 at halftime after letting the Huskies hit 17 of their first 31 shots.

But the Cyclones opened the second half on a 26-11 run, with Wigginton hitting an off-balance 3 to push Iowa State's lead to 10. Jackson followed with a 3 that made it 62-49.

''We needed to respond well in the second half, really on the defensive end first,'' Prohm said. ''Our pace was a lot better, and we made the extra pass.''

Wigginton jumped a passing lane at the top of the key and cruised down court for a two-handed dunk and followed with an assist on a Cameron Lard dunk, pushing the Cyclones lead to 70-51.

Wigginton also had seven rebounds, four assists and three steals.

''My teammates were finding me in the right spots,'' Wigginton said.

Reserves Jakolby Long (concussion) and Zoran Talley (bruised foot) sat out with injuries, leaving Iowa State with just eight available players.

Long and Talley are questionable for Thursday's game against Iowa, with Talley scheduled for an MRI on Tuesday according to Prohm.

Eugene German had 28 points for the Huskies (5-4).

THE BIG PICTURE

Iowa State: Wigginton's move from point to shooting guard has freed the freshman up to attack the basket while looking to score - a valued commodity for a team without a lot of proven scorers. He has responded with 63 points in his last three games. The next question for the Cyclones will be in how they adjust once opponents start making stopping Wigginton a priority.

Northern Illinois: The Huskies lost for just the second time in five games. But if they can play two halves like they did the first one on Monday, they'll be a handful in the MAC.

KEY NUMBERS

Weiler-Babb has had at least 10 assists in three consecutive games. ... Lard finished with 14 points, going 7 of 10 from the field. ... Dante Thorpe had 19 points for the Huskies. ... Iowa State knocked down a season-high 14 3s on 26 tries. Wigginton was 4 of 6 from beyond the arc. ... Northern Illinois had just nine assists on 33 field goals.

HE SAID IT

''I've got to get myself going,'' said Jackson, who scored 19 of his points in the second half. ''I think for us, in order to be a real good program, I have to max out in my role.''

UP NEXT

Iowa State hosts rival Iowa on Thursday. The Hawkeyes were blown out by Indiana on Monday, their fifth loss in six games.

Northern Illinois hosts Central Connecticut State on Saturday.

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Key Players
Min. Per Game
Pts. Per Game
Ast. Per Game
Reb. Per Game
Field Goal %
Three Point %
Free Throw %
+ 3 Dante Thorpe made 3-pt. jump shot 29.0
+ 2 Lindell Wigginton made fade-away jump shot 37.0
+ 2 Dante Thorpe made layup 57.0
  Defensive rebound by Dante Thorpe 59.0
  Donovan Jackson missed 3-pt. jump shot 1:01
+ 2 Dante Thorpe made floating jump shot 1:12
+ 2 Jeff Beverly made jump shot, assist by Terrence Lewis 1:33
  Bad pass turnover on Lacey James, stolen by Lindell Wigginton 2:03
+ 2 Donovan Jackson made jump shot 2:20
  Lost ball turnover on Dante Thorpe, stolen by Donovan Jackson 2:30
+ 2 Cameron Lard made layup, assist by Donovan Jackson 2:44
Team Stats
Points 80 94
Field Goals 33-67 (49.3%) 34-66 (51.5%)
3-Pointers 7-16 (43.8%) 14-26 (53.8%)
Free Throws 7-13 (53.8%) 12-16 (75.0%)
Total Rebounds 37 36
Offensive 6 8
Defensive 27 26
Team 4 2
Assists 9 22
Steals 6 7
Blocks 4 11
Turnovers 11 8
Fouls 19 14
Technicals 0 0
28 PTS, 1 REB, 3 AST
28 PTS, 7 REB, 4 AST
12T
away team logo N. Illinois 4-4 384280
home team logo Iowa St. 5-2 365894
Team Stats
away team logo N. Illinois 4-4 73.7 PPG 37.4 RPG 11.0 APG
home team logo Iowa St. 5-2 76.9 PPG 37.7 RPG 15.1 APG
Key Players
10
E. German G 20.4 PPG 5.2 RPG 2.9 APG 49.0 FG%
5
L. Wigginton G 13.5 PPG 4.0 RPG 2.1 APG 41.5 FG%
Top Scorers
E. German G 28 PTS 1 REB 3 AST
L. Wigginton G 28 PTS 7 REB 4 AST
49.3 FG% 51.5
43.8 3PT FG% 53.8
53.8 FT% 75.0
Starters PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
E. German 28 1 3 11/22 3/7 3/4 3 29 2 0 3 0 1
D. Thorpe 19 3 1 8/12 2/2 1/2 1 29 1 0 2 1 2
L. Bradley 13 9 1 5/14 1/5 2/3 3 28 0 2 1 0 9
J. Thomas 4 2 2 2/4 0/0 0/0 2 17 2 0 0 1 1
L. James 1 4 1 0/3 0/0 1/2 3 14 0 1 2 1 3
Starters PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
E. German 28 1 3 11/22 3/7 3/4 3 29 2 0 3 0 1
D. Thorpe 19 3 1 8/12 2/2 1/2 1 29 1 0 2 1 2
L. Bradley 13 9 1 5/14 1/5 2/3 3 28 0 2 1 0 9
J. Thomas 4 2 2 2/4 0/0 0/0 2 17 2 0 0 1 1
L. James 1 4 1 0/3 0/0 1/2 3 14 0 1 2 1 3
Bench PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
N. McCarty 4 4 0 2/5 0/1 0/2 2 21 0 1 0 2 2
A. Demogerontas 4 1 1 2/3 0/0 0/0 4 16 1 0 1 0 1
R. Henry-Hayes 3 1 0 1/1 1/1 0/0 0 11 0 0 1 0 1
G. Daow 2 7 0 1/2 0/0 0/0 1 20 0 0 1 1 6
O. Hamilton 2 1 0 1/1 0/0 0/0 0 13 0 0 0 0 1
A. Zelis 0 0 0 0/0 0/0 0/0 0 2 0 0 0 0 0
J. Key - - - - - - - - - - - - -
J. Siu - - - - - - - - - - - - -
M. Brown - - - - - - - - - - - - -
B. Danowski - - - - - - - - - - - - -
B. Woods - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Total 80 33 9 33/67 7/16 7/13 19 200 6 4 11 6 27
Starters PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
L. Wigginton 28 7 4 9/15 4/6 6/10 2 32 3 2 2 2 5
D. Jackson 24 2 2 9/17 6/12 0/0 3 33 1 0 1 0 2
N. Weiler-Babb 12 5 11 4/8 2/3 2/2 1 35 1 0 2 1 4
J. Beverly 2 6 2 1/6 0/1 0/0 2 22 0 0 1 3 3
S. Young 2 5 1 1/3 0/0 0/0 1 24 2 3 1 1 4
Starters PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
L. Wigginton 28 7 4 9/15 4/6 6/10 2 32 3 2 2 2 5
D. Jackson 24 2 2 9/17 6/12 0/0 3 33 1 0 1 0 2
N. Weiler-Babb 12 5 11 4/8 2/3 2/2 1 35 1 0 2 1 4
J. Beverly 2 6 2 1/6 0/1 0/0 2 22 0 0 1 3 3
S. Young 2 5 1 1/3 0/0 0/0 1 24 2 3 1 1 4
Bench PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
C. Lard 14 4 0 7/10 0/0 0/0 4 21 0 4 0 0 4
T. Lewis 9 1 1 2/5 1/3 4/4 0 19 0 2 0 0 1
H. Brase 3 4 1 1/2 1/1 0/0 1 14 0 0 1 1 3
Z. Talley Jr. - - - - - - - - - - - - -
J. Long - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Total 94 34 22 34/66 14/26 12/16 14 200 7 11 8 8 26