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Hunter scores 23 as Iowa State edges LSU in NCAA tourney

Izaiah Brockington added 19 points as the 11th-seeded Cyclones (21-12) got their first win in the NCAA tourney since 2017 — also in Milwaukee.

MILWAUKEE — Freshman Tyrese Hunter scored 23 points and Iowa State made itself at home in Milwaukee once again, using its hard-nosed defense to beat No. 6 seed LSU 59-54 in the first round of the NCAA Tournament on Friday night.

Izaiah Brockington added 19 points as the 11th-seeded Cyclones (21-12) got their first win in the NCAA tourney since 2017 — also in Milwaukee. They held the Tigers to 37% shooting and forced 19 turnovers, stopping a three-game slide.

Hunter, who grew up in nearby Racine, made six of his seven 3-pointers in the second half, sending coach T.J. Otzelberger to one sweet victory. The 44-year-old Otzelberger grew up in Milwaukee, went to Wisconsin-Whitewater and began his coaching career at Catholic Central High School in Burlington.

Otzelberger was hired after Iowa State won just two games last season. Now the Cyclones are into the second round of the Midwest Region, where they will face the Colgate-Wisconsin winner on Sunday.

Tari Eason scored 18 points for LSU, and senior Darius Days had 14. But they didn't get much help.

It was the first game for the Tigers since coach Will Wade was fired last weekend amid allegations of NCAA violations. Associate head coach Bill Armstrong also was let go.

Iowa State, which shot 36% from the field, opened a 50-39 lead on Brockington's 3 with 7:09 left. But LSU responded with an 11-1 run.

After Days' foul shot got the Tigers within one, Hunter connected on a long 3 to give the Cyclones some room. He nailed another long one from a similar spot with 19 seconds left, lifting his team to a 59-54 lead.

In between all the missed shots and turnovers, each team had its moments. Hunter had an acrobatic layup early on, and then beat the shot clock with a 3-pointer for a 24-12 lead with 6:37 left in the first half.

But LSU came right back. Eric Gaines had a huge block on a driving Brockington with 4:35 left, part of a 7-0 run for the Tigers to close the first half.

The halftime numbers were bleak; Iowa State was 9 for 27 from the field, and LSU was 7 for 27 with 10 turnovers.

___

More AP coverage of March Madness: https://apnews.com/hub/march-madness and https://apnews.com/hub/ncaa-mens-bracket and https://twitter.com/AP_Top25

BOX SCORE

IOWA ST. (21-12)

Jones 0-0 0-0 0, Brockington 6-16 6-8 19, Hunter 8-13 0-0 23, Kalscheur 1-8 1-2 4, Enaruna 1-1 0-0 2, Grill 3-13 0-0 8, Kunc 1-3 0-0 3, Conditt 0-0 0-0 0, Jackson 0-2 0-0 0. Totals 20-56 7-10 59.

LSU (22-12)

Days 4-9 4-8 14, Wilkinson 3-9 2-2 8, Reid 1-1 2-2 4, Murray 3-8 1-3 8, Pinson 1-5 0-1 2, Eason 5-9 7-7 18, Gaines 0-3 0-0 0, O'Neal 0-1 0-0 0, Williams 0-1 0-0 0, Fudge 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 17-46 16-23 54.

Halftime: Iowa St. 24-19. 3-Point Goals: Iowa St. 12-37 (Hunter 7-11, Grill 2-11, Kunc 1-3, Brockington 1-4, Kalscheur 1-6, Jackson 0-2), LSU 4-19 (Days 2-6, Eason 1-2, Murray 1-4, Gaines 0-1, Pinson 0-1, Wilkinson 0-5). Rebounds: Iowa St. 27 (Jones, Brockington, Grill, Kunc 4), LSU 30 (Days 12). Assists: Iowa St. 14 (Hunter, Kalscheur 3), LSU 11 (Pinson 7). Total Fouls: Iowa St. 19, LSU 14.

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