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Wichita State's independent, student-run news source

The Sunflower

Wichita State's independent, student-run news source

The Sunflower

Men’s basketball exterminates Richmond Spiders in double-digit win

Dalen+Ridgnal+and+Xavier+Bell+pose+for+a+photo+after+their+win+against+the+Richmond+Spiders+on+Nov.+29.+The+Shockers+won+80-68+on+Koch+Arenas+20th+anniversary.
Kristy Mace
Dalen Ridgnal and Xavier Bell pose for a photo after their win against the Richmond Spiders on Nov. 29. The Shockers won 80-68 on Koch Arena’s 20th anniversary.

It was on Nov. 29, 2003, that Charles Koch Arena hosted its first men’s basketball game. Twenty years later to the date, Wichita State men’s basketball beat the Richmond Spiders, 80-68

Paul Mills, head men’s basketball coach, said it was impressive to see five players finishing with double-figure points.

“I just thought there was contributions by everybody,” Mills said. 

In a match where the Shockers never trailed, a fast-paced first half saw the Shockers take an early 13-2 lead before the first media timeout.

With less than 10 minutes left in the first half, the Shockers had a 12-point lead over the Spiders, 24-12, yet Richmond cut the lead after a 12-2 run, eventually making it a two-point game at the half, 33-31.

Wichita State did not stop its momentum as they took the first points in the second half, going for a 10-0 run to extend the lead to 56-43. 

Junior Xavier Bell had 17 points and five rebounds and said the game was a team win. 

“We came in at halftime and kind of knew what we had to do offensively and defensively to come out with a win,” Bell said. “I think all of us just bought in with each other and came up with the right mindset.” 

Although the team was great offensively, it was redshirt junior Harlond Beverly and junior Quincy Ballad who were integral on the defensive end.

Beverly was personally responsible for shutting down Richmond’s Jordan King, who averages close to 20 points on the season. King went 7-17 against Wichita State. 

“I feel with those types of players you kind of just have to kind of wear them down, get them tired,” Beverly said. 

Mills said Ballard was responsible for stopping 7-foot senior Neal Quinn, which allowed the team to maintain the lead.

Beverly scored 13 points and five rebounds. Mills said Beverly is getting better at understanding how things should flow. 

“He did a phenomenal job, led us in deflections in the game and was able to get his hands on a lot of basketballs,” Mills said. 

Mills said that every day the team watches film, and he knows the team wants to get better. 

“I know guys care about helping the team and that means a lot when you have guys that have a growth mentality,” Mills said. “You realize that you’re dealing with a group that’s going to make strides through the course of the year.” 

During the second half of the match, there was a moment where players could not hear each other because the fans were so loud. Redshirt junior Colby Rogers said that the energy the crowd had was the loudest he has experienced during his time at Wichita State. 

“The more and more help we can get, the better,” Rogers said. “ And I think a packed roundhouse will be valuable to us.”

Wichita State men’s basketball will play an on-the-road game against the University of Missouri on Sunday, Dec. 3. Tip-off is scheduled for 2 p.m.

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About the Contributors
Melanie Rivera-Cortez, Sports Editor
Kristy Mace, Photo Editor
Kristy Mace is the photo editor for The Sunflower. She's majoring in psychology. Currently a junior, Mace hopes to go on to get her Ph.D. and become a neuropsychologist. She also plays for Wichita State's bowling team and does professional photography aside from The Sunflower.

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