Wichita State wasn’t even supposed to get by Pittsburgh in their opening game. Now, after another impressive showing on Thursday night against La Salle, the No. 9 Shockers look poised to make a run all the way to the Final Four.
Wichita State jumped on La Salle early and led wire to wire, dominating the Explorers in every facet of the game, with a 44-23 rebounding advantage especially jumping off the page. In addition, the Shockers shot nearly 45 per cent from the field and over 40 per cent from three-point range while holding La Salle to just 35.7 per cent shooting. In truth, nothing about this result should have come as a surprise to anyone. La Salle’s run to the Sweet Sixteen was a nice story, but they were in over their heads. Wichita State, on the other hand, looks more than capable of upsetting a shaky Ohio State side with a trip to the Final Four on the line.
The Shockers opened the tournament by routing a Pittsburgh team that some pegged as the sleeper of the West Region and then followed that up by rallying past No. 1 Gonzaga. With the 72-58 victory over La Salle now in the books, Wichita State’s three wins have come by an average of 12.7 points. That’s not the mark of a fluky Cinderella. This team is good, and they have no reason to fear the Buckeyes.
Don’t mess with the Shockers, man. Just ask this guy…
(video courtesy of Dan Nelson)