Cyclones can't mess with Texas - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Cyclones can't mess with Texas

AUSTIN, Texas -- Damion James scored 19 points to lead No. 7 Texas to a 75-67 win over Iowa State in the Big 12 opener for both teams on Saturday.

Gary Johnson added 17 points and had nine rebounds for the Longhorns (12-3), who are undefeated in 11 conference home openers under coach Rick Barnes. The Longhorns also have won a school record 13 in a row at home in the Big 12, dating back to 2007 when Kevin Durant was a Texas freshman.

Craig Brackens scored 20 and grabbed 13 rebounds to lead Iowa State (11-5), which lost its ninth straight road game in league play.

Johnson used a variety of moves to score 13 in the first half, picking up the slack for slumping shooting guard A.J. Abrams, who was 1-of-6 shooting against relentless defensive pressure from the Cyclones' Bryan Peterson. Johnson scored eight in a 17-5 Texas run that opened up a 29-16 lead before Iowa State closed to 33-27 by halftime.

The Cyclones quickly cut the lead to one after the break when Justin Hamilton hit a 3-pointer on the first shot of the half and Brackens converted a three-point play. Two dunks by James and a third by Dexter Pittman allowed Texas to hold onto the slim lead.

The Longhorns pushed the lead to 58-47 when Pittman dunked over Hamilton and Johnson blocked a shot and grabbed it to set up Justin Mason's layup.

The Cyclones wouldn't let Texas get comfortable. Lucca Staiger twice got lost in the corner for wide open shots before the Longhorns finally put the game away. Two nifty passes under the basket from Varez Ward to Pittman and Connor Atchley led to easy baskets that put Texas up 67-57 with four minutes to play.

Staiger finished with 15 points.

Abrams, one of the top 3-point shooters in the country, remained stuck in his scoring slump, finishing with eight points on 2-of-10 shooting with just one 3-pointer. The Longhorns' leading scorer this season has been held under 10 points in four of the last five games.
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