No. 23 Iowa State hands St. John’s 1st loss of season 71-60

Dec 4, 2022, 12:38 AM | Updated: 6:02 pm
St. John's guard Posh Alexander (0) and Iowa State guard Gabe Kalscheur (22) collide during the fir...

St. John's guard Posh Alexander (0) and Iowa State guard Gabe Kalscheur (22) collide during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game, Sunday, Dec. 4, 2022, in Ames, Iowa. (AP Photo/ Matthew Putney)

(AP Photo/ Matthew Putney)

              St. John's head coach Mike Anderson is held back as St. John's bench is assessed with a technical foul during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game against Iowa State, Sunday, Dec. 4, 2022, in Ames, Iowa. (AP Photo/ Matthew Putney)
            
              St. John's head coach Mike Anderson directs his team against Iowa State during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game, Sunday, Dec. 4, 2022, in Ames, Iowa. (AP Photo/ Matthew Putney)
            
              St. John's guard Posh Alexander (0) breaks free for a basket past Iowa State guard Demarion Watson, right, during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game, Sunday, Dec. 4, 2022, in Ames, Iowa. (AP Photo/ Matthew Putney)
            
              Iowa State head coach T.J. Otzelberger directs his players during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game against St. John's, Sunday, Dec. 4, 2022, in Ames, Iowa. (AP Photo/ Matthew Putney)
            
              St. John's guard Montez Mathis (10) drives inside as Iowa State guards Caleb Grill (2) and Gabe Kalscheur (22) defend during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game, Sunday, Dec. 4, 2022, in Ames, Iowa. (AP Photo/ Matthew Putney)
            
              St. John's center Joel Soriano (11) fouls Iowa State forward Aljaz Kunc (5) during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game, Sunday, Dec. 4, 2022, in Ames, Iowa. (AP Photo/ Matthew Putney)
            
              Iowa State guard Caleb Grill (2) fouls St. John's guard Montez Mathis (10) on a shot during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game, Sunday, Dec. 4, 2022, in Ames, Iowa. (AP Photo/ Matthew Putney)
            
              St. John's guard Posh Alexander (0) and Iowa State forward Aljaz Kunc (5) battle for the ball at mid court during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game, Sunday, Dec. 4, 2022, in Ames, Iowa. (AP Photo/ Matthew Putney)
            
              St. John's guard Posh Alexander (0) and Iowa State guard Gabe Kalscheur (22) collide during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game, Sunday, Dec. 4, 2022, in Ames, Iowa. (AP Photo/ Matthew Putney)

AMES, Iowa (AP) — Jaren Holmes scored 14 points and Aljaz Kunc added 12 on Sunday as No. 23 Iowa State handed St. John’s its first loss of the season 71-60.

Kunc also contributed eight rebounds and three assists for the Cyclones (7-1). Robert Jones had 11 points, four rebounds and three assists.

Posh Alexander led St. John’s (8-1) with 14 points.

Iowa State turned the tables on the full-court pressing Red Storm, forcing 20 turnovers and holding St. John’s to 36% shooting.

“We work every single day on our defensive pressure,” Holmes said. “We want to turn teams over. We want to be the best defensive team in the country.”

The Cyclones opened the game with a 17-2 run, capped off by a Gabe Kalscheur 3-pointer at the 10:47 mark of the first half.

In the opening 9 minutes, St. John’s went 0 for 8 shooting and committed nine turnovers. Rafael Pinzon hit a 3-pointer for the Red Storm’s first basket, with 9:54 left in the half.

“It’s a lesson learned,” St. John’s coach Mike Anderson said. “One of the things you’ve got to do when you go on the road is, you’ve got to be able to shoot the basketball. That cures a lot of ills.”

The Cyclones led 33-22 at the break. St. John’s went 6 for 23 shooting (26.1%) in the first 20 minutes.

A 3-pointer from Holmes gave Iowa State a 44-29 margin early in the second half. Osun Osunniyi’s dunk made it 47-30 with 13 minutes remaining.

“Our guards did a great job cutting,” Iowa State coach T.J. Otzelberger said. “With St. John’s, they pressure you and want to spread the floor a little more. So, you can get some more of those cuts to score, some more of those opportunities.”

The game was part of the Big12/Big East Battle.

BIG PICTURE

Iowa State will likely remain in the top 25 after making its season debut this week. St. John’s was playing its first game outside of New York City and began this weekend as one of just 15 unbeaten teams nationally.

UP NEXT

St. John’s opens Big East play Wednesday with a home game against DePaul.

Iowa State travels to rival Iowa for a Thursday showdown that will air of FS1.

___

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No. 23 Iowa State hands St. John’s 1st loss of season 71-60