Iowa State beats K-State 70-65 after blowing 20-point lead

AMES, Iowa (AP) — Senior Matt Thomas scored a career-high 25 points and Iowa State held off a furious Kansas State rally to win 70-65 on Tuesday night for its fourth victory in six games.

Naz Mitrou-Long had 13 and Monte Morris scored 12 for the Cyclones (13-6, 5-3 Big 12), who blew a 46-26 lead but survived after Mitrou-Long’s steal and free throws with 21 seconds left.

Thomas, who entered averaging 11 points per outing, scored 20 points in a blistering first half as Iowa State jumped ahead 43-26. Thomas opened the second half with a 3-pointer to make it a 20-point game.

It seemed over — until K-State (15-5, 4-4) answered with a stunning 32-11 run that gave it a 58-57 lead with just over five minutes left.

Morris scored on back-to-back possessions to give Iowa State the lead back, and Deonte Burton’s layup with 39 seconds to go gave the Cyclones a cushion that proved crucial in the closing moments.

Wesley Iwundu had 15 points for the Wildcats. Their three road losses in the Big 12 have come by a total of eight points.