Shocker Madness kicks off official start for men’s, women’s basketball

Evan Pflugradt

In a crowded Charles Koch Arena during Shocker Madness, 13 new Shockers took the court.  

Thursday officially marked the start of the 2015-16 basketball season with scrimmages, a three-point contest and a dunk contest.

It was a sneak peak at the new Shockers. The men’s team welcomed eight new players to its squad this offseason, and the women’s team welcomed five new players. Veteran players were seniors Fred VanVleet, Ron Baker, Bush Wamukota and Anton Grady. Sophomores Zach Brown and Shaquille Morris took the night off because of fatigue.

The show started with a three-point contest between the men and women. Baker, Van Vleet, sophomore Peyton Allen and sophomore Conner Frankamp represented the men. Junior TaQuandra Mike, junior Marija Pacar, freshman Jyar Francis, and sophomore Rangie Bessard represented the women.

Frankamp advanced to the second round after he led all men in the first round, scoring 16 points out of a possible 18. Frankamp cleared the first rack with a perfect 5-5 and went 4-5 on the final two racks, nailing the last four shots at each station.

Bessard advanced past the first round to represent the women’s team. Bessard finished the first round with 14 and advanced to compete with Frankamp for the championship.

Frankamp beat Bessard 16-14 in the second round. Frankamp went 4-5 on the first two racks and 3-5 on the final rack.

Freshman forward Eric Hamilton won the dunk contest, defeating sophomore Rashard Kelly 44-43 in the championship round. The contest featured freshmen Eric Hamilton, Landry Shamet, Markis Mcduffie, Ty Taylor II and sophomore Rashard Kelly.

Hamilton started the contest by jumping over WSU mascot, WuShock. Hamilton cleared the mascot and was awarded a perfect score of 50. In the second round, Hamilton continued to showcase his massive vertical by placing a team manager under the basket in his second dunk.

A 6-foot-8 freshman, Hamilton claimed to not have practiced either dunk before the competition.

Hamilton hustled in for a double-pump slam from the baseline in the final round.

The Shocker women’s team scrimmaged their male practice squad. Jaleesa Chapel and Diamond Lockhart led the team with six points each. Lockhart, a transfer from Texas Tech, practiced with the Shockers last season. Lockhart is one of seven Shocker women yet to play a game for WSU. Junior Brittany Martin also had a great performance. She battled inside the paint for four points on 2-2 shooting. Martin also blocked a shot and recovered a steal for the Shockers. The women defeated the male practice squad 29-4.

The men’s scrimmage yielded a lot of playing time for four of the five freshmen, and transfers Peyton Allen and Frankamp.

The black team featured a starting lineup of Shamet, Frankamp, Peyton Allen, Evan Wessel and Hamilton.

The yellow team featured a starting lineup of Ty Taylor II, Baker, Markis Mcduffie, Kelly and Rauno Nurger.

The yellow team edged the black team 19-12. Baker led all scorers with seven points on 2-3 shooting. Baker was perfect from the free throw line 2-2. Kelly scored six for the yellow team. He was perfect from the stripe, 4-4.

The men adjusted to playing with a 30-second shot clock, which led to a few rushed shots and off-tempo plays.

Shamet and Hamilton led the black team in rebounds with four each. Baker led the yellow team with six rebounds. Nurger had four rebounds and two blocks.