Iowa State vs. Northern Iowa final score: Cyclones rally to win wild game in OT

Reese Strickland-USA TODAY Sports

Iowa State erased an 18-point deficit and withstood a buzzer-beating three that forced overtime to find a way to win yet again.

For a while, it looked like No. 17 Iowa State was about to suffer its first loss of the year. The Cyclones trailed Northern Iowa 49-31 in the second half amid struggles from leading scorer Melvin Ejim.

Then, Ejim led Iowa State on a massive 23-2 run to get back in it and the Cyclones eventually held on for a 91-82 win in overtime. The win puts Iowa State at 7-0, its best start in a decade.

Northern Iowa responded to the run and quickly went back up four, keeping the game in doubt until the end of regulation. With the Cyclones then up three in the closing seconds, Northern Iowa's Seth Tuttle banked in a game-tying three with a second to go to force overtime.

Ejim hit a pair of threes in the extra session that put the game away. He finished with 22 points, 20 coming in the second half and overtime. Georges Niang also had 22 points while DeAndre Kane had 18 points, 11 rebounds and six assists.

Nate Buss had 23 points on 10-14 shooting to lead the Panthers.

The Cyclones face their in-state rival -- and fellow ranked opponent -- No. 23 Iowa Hawkeyes on Friday in the Iowa Corn Cy-Hawk Series Showdown.

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