The 17th ranked Iowa State women host 21st ranked Iowa tonight in Ames. Cyclone coach Bill Fennelly is happy to be able to start the in-state series that will follow with the men’s game. “It’s a great way to celebrate what these two universities are about. It’s an honor that the women’s basketball game has become a small part of the rivalry with   wrestling and football and men’s basketball Friday night — we’re looking forward to our turn,” Fennelly says.

The Hawkeyes have won six games in a row and are 10-1 overall. “I think it is one of the better teams that Iowa has had in my time here and certainly presents an amazing challenge for our kids,” Fennelly says. “We’re excited about the opportunity and looking forward to hopefully playing very well on Thursday night.”

Fenelly says the offense has pushed the Hawkeyes to their good start. “They’re scoring at an amazing rate — I think their last three games they’ve averaged like 97 points. They have five people in double figures,” Fennelly says. He says it is rare in the women’s game to have five or six players like Iowa has that can put up 20 points on any given night.

Not only will Iowa tax the Cyclone defense, it will also force them to make points on offense. “We can’t go two, three minutes without scoring, because I don’t know that we can slow ’em down that much. We are going to have to figure out something to slow them down. We’re going to have to be more efficient and shoot the ball better than we have recently,” Fennelly says. The Cyclones come into the game at 8-0.