Shockers secure AAC No. 4 seed with season finale victory over Tulsa


Marshall Sunner

Wichita State senior Jaime Echenique defends against Tulsa’s Martins Igbanu during his last home game at Charles Koch Arena on Sunday, March 8.

Wichita State (23-8) defeated Tulsa (21-10) 79-57 Sunday evening to improve to 11-7 in conference play and clinch the No. 4 seed and a first-round bye in the upcoming American Athletic Conference Tournament.

The Shockers started out on fire in the first half, opening up a 13-point lead, which Tulsa cut to eight by the half.

In the second half, WSU got out to a 22-point lead with just over 11 minutes left, but the Golden Hurrican answered with a 12-0 run to cut the deficit to 10. But the Shockers pulled away late thanks to clutch baskets from Jamarius Burton and Erik Stevenson. 

On his senior day, the Shockers’ lone senior, Jaime Echenique, rose to the occasion. Echenique tallied 13 points and seven rebounds in 25 minutes played. He was honored after the victory for his two seasons in Wichita. 

For the game, WSU shot 47% (27-57) from the floor and 39% (11-28) from downtown. The Shockers had three different players finish in double figures, as Echenique, Stevenson, and Jamarius Burton reached the mark. 

On the other side, Tulsa shot 34% from the field and 41% from downtown. Martins Igbany led the Golden Hurricane with 20 points off the bench. 

The battle on the glass was pretty even overall, but WSU managed to outrebound Tulsa 36-28. The Shockers also outscored the Golden Hurricane 28-18 in the paint.

Stevenson was the spark that WSU needed in the second half as the sophomore guard scored 15 of his 18 points in the final 20 minutes of play.

Burton also stepped up late, nailing both tough three-pointers he shot while also driving successfully in the lane. The sophomore guard finished with 14 points, five assists, and two rebounds in 28 minutes of play. 

The Shockers will be back in action on Friday as they await their opponent after earning the first-round bye for the conference tournament. The Shockers will play the winner of the 5-12 game between UConn and Tulane.