Cyclones prepare for NCAA battle with Notre Dame - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Cyclones prepare for NCAA battle with Notre Dame

One year ago Royce White took the nation by storm and led an underdog Iowa State team to their first NCAA tournament in seven years.

One year later -- Fred Hoiberg brought another group of underdogs to the big dance without the help from their top 3 scorers from the previous season --

Fred Hoiberg Iowa State Head Coach said, "We were confident because we were getting a pure point guard in Korie. We were getting a very dynamic scorer in Will, and then the guys with experience."

Melvin Ejim/Iowa State Junior Forward said, "We weren't all Royce White last year. There were definitely guys that aren't here on our team that contributed to our success that year, and this year we're showing more than ever there are other guys on this team that are extremely good players."

The Cyclones -- picked to finish 8th in the Big 12 -- hit the most 3 pointers in the nation this season -- wound up 4th in conference play -- and made their way to Dayton as a number 10 seed, but that's not where they think this ride will end.

Korie Lucious/Iowa State Senior Guard said, "Offensively I think we've showed that we can play with anybody. I think we showed that throughout the whole year. We averaged almost 80 points a game."

Ejim said, "We score really quickly, and that's tough for some teams to guard when you've got an undersized 4 or 5 that really space the floor well, and create mismatch problems. It's hard to guard."

The Cyclones will need to deal with some big bodies on the Notre Dame side -- led by big man Jack Cooley who's averaging a double-double --

The Irish -- however -- will line-up against an Iowa State team that likes to light it up from the arc unlike any other team they've facet this season --

Eric Atkins/Notre Dame Junior Guard said, "We've played a lot of fast break teams, but not teams that shoot the 3 like this. In the Big East it's usually inside-out, guys banging' a lot. These guys like to get up and down, stop at the 3 point line, so it's definitely a different style of play."

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