"I just told him I loved him," Sullivan said. "I'm glad we
got this one."
What the Cyclones got was their biggest victory of the season --
a 68-61 win over No. 15 Kansas on Saturday. And Stinson, a
freshman, was the difference.
Stinson scored 16 of his 19 points in the second half, grabbed
11 rebounds and tormented the Jayhawks at every turn down the
stretch before finally hitting a running, floating shot from the
left side with 32 seconds left to finish them off.
He also handed out three assists and at 6-feet-2, blocked a shot
by 6-9 Wayne Simien.
"Curtis is terrific," Iowa State coach Wayne Morgan said.
"His basketball IQ is genius. It was like he was made to play
Iowa State (13-4, 4-2 Big 12) trailed by 11 points in the first
half and by nine early in the second half before storming back to
break a five-game losing streak to the Jayhawks (13-4, 5-1).
The Cyclones shot 60.6 percent and scored 47 points in the
second half after shooting 7-for-33 in the opening half.
"The bottom line is this: You're not supposed to give up 47
points in a half after you gave up 21 (in the first half)," Kansas
coach Bill Self said. "That was the biggest reason why we lost the
"We had so many breakdowns defensively, which led to a lot of
easy baskets by them in the second half."
Jake Sullivan made five 3-pointers and added 17 points for Iowa
State, which frustrated Kansas for most of the game with its zone
defense. The Jayhawks shot 37 percent and were outrebounded 45-39.
Keith Langford led Kansas with 20 points, but no one else on the
Jayhawks hurt the Cyclones. Simien scored 11 points but Aaron
Miles, averaging 10.4 points, had only three and was 0-for-5 from
the field, though he did hand out 11 assists.
Jackson Vroman scored 12 points for Iowa State, while Jared
Homan had 12 points, 11 rebounds and six blocks. Will Blalock, Iowa
State's other freshman guard, had 11 assists and no turnovers in 33
"Blalock is real quick and Stinson is real big," Kansas'
Michael Lee said. "They did a good job of getting into the lane
and creating things. We knew how we were supposed to defend them
and we didn't do that consistently."
Vroman had 10 points, including two three-point plays, in a 19-6
run that gave Iowa State a 44-40 lead and the Cyclones never
trailed again. That was due largely to Stinson, who made one big
play after another once Kansas had drawn to 54-53 on Jeff Graves'
dunk with 6:35 left.
After missing a shot, Stinson outfought J.R. Giddens for the
ball and Giddens was called for a foul. Iowa State kept possession
and Sullivan hit a 3 to make it 57-53.
Stinson then fed Damion Staple for a layup, blocked Simien's
shot and later fired a pass to Sullivan, who buried a 26-footer to
make it 62-53. Stinson's spinning off-balance shot stretched the
lead to 64-54 with 2:44 left.
"Coach said we had to start attacking more," Stinson said.
"We started taking it to the lane more. That was the biggest
Kansas made one last run, scoring seven straight points to cut
the lead to 64-61 on Simien's free throw with 1:05 remaining. Iowa
State then worked the shot clock down before Stinson drove in from
the left side and dropped a soft, floating shot into the basket for
a 66-61 lead.
"The clock was running down and we needed a shot bad," Stinson
said. "They double-teamed Will and left me open and when I got the
ball, I did a pump fake and ... just hit a teardrop and it went in
Stinson then made one more smart play, getting the ball to
Sullivan, a 91 percent free throw shooter, after Kansas missed a
shot. Sullivan sank both free throws with 11.5 seconds left to wrap