The Sunflower

Takeaways from the Shockers’ big-game hunt with the Bears

Wichita+State+forward+Jaime+Echenique+raises+his+hands+to+the+fans+during+their+game+against+Baylor+on+Dec.+1%2C+2018+in+Charles+Koch+Arena.
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Takeaways from the Shockers’ big-game hunt with the Bears

Wichita State forward Jaime Echenique raises his hands to the fans during their game against Baylor on Dec. 1, 2018 in Charles Koch Arena.

Wichita State forward Jaime Echenique raises his hands to the fans during their game against Baylor on Dec. 1, 2018 in Charles Koch Arena.

Joseph Barringhaus

Wichita State forward Jaime Echenique raises his hands to the fans during their game against Baylor on Dec. 1, 2018 in Charles Koch Arena.

Joseph Barringhaus

Joseph Barringhaus

Wichita State forward Jaime Echenique raises his hands to the fans during their game against Baylor on Dec. 1, 2018 in Charles Koch Arena.

The battle is over, and the dust has settled from Saturday’s marquee matchup with Baylor.

There’s much to take away from the game, from a first half that showed Wichita State’s strengths, to a second half that showed the team’s youth.

Case in point, WSU beat a Big 12 opponent at home for the first time in a long, long time.

“We’re going in the right direction,” senior Markis McDuffie said. “We have our strengths and weaknesses — it’s all about getting better.

“We’re going to go a long ways this year — more than people expected.”

Let’s get into the specifics.

If you need a reminder of this team’s victory, look at the first half of Saturday’s game.

Samajae Haynes-Jones had five first-half three-pointers, Erik Stevenson proved he may just be the program’s next big-time player, and Dexter Dennis and Jaime Echenique excelled at doing the little things.

Dennis had the second-best plus-minus on the team, behind Echenique. When Echenique was on the floor, WSU outscored Baylor by 13 points. He’s been a major factor since being inserted into the starting rotation.

Scoring came at the rim and beyond the perimeter, but consistency has plagued the Shockers’ offense this year.

Haynes-Jones is moving in the right direction, but guys such as Jamarius Burton have disappeared at times. Burton recorded one rebound and no points or assists on Saturday.

McDuffie, the NBA hopeful, has scored plenty at times, but has also disappeared late in games.

Against Alabama, McDuffie simply couldn’t miss. But when the game clock got to four-minutes, Thanos snapped his fingers and McDuffie disappeared from the game. He took just two shots in the final four minutes with the game still in reach.

On Saturday, McDuffie didn’t demand the ball as Baylor closed the gap to a two-possession game.

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About the Writer
Marshall Sunner, Reporter

Marshall Sunner is a reporter for The Sunflower.

Sunner is a freshman at Wichita State.

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