Wichita State is second in the nation in bench scoring but the Shockers don’t have Jeffrey Carroll coming off the bench. The Oklahoma State junior hit his first eight shots of the game Saturday night and single-handedly scored as many as the Shockers bench (22-22) in helping lead Oklahoma State to an impressive 93-76 victory before a sold-out crowd of more than 15,000 at Intrust Bank Arena in downtown Wichita.
The Cowboys improve to 9-2, while Wichita State falls to 9-3. It was the Shockers first loss in seven games at Intrust Bank Arena in Gregg Marshall’s 10 years as Wichita State’s head coach.
It was also only the second time since 2008 that the Shockers had lost a home non-conference game.
“One of the things I truly enjoy about being a college basketball coach is coming into the other team’s venue and winning,” Oklahoma State head coach Brad Underwood said, “and the hush of 15,000 (fans). That hush of that, it’s awesome. That’s one of the things I truly enjoy.”
Carroll tied a career-high with 22 points, finishing 8-of-10 from the field, including 3-of-5 from behind the three-point arc. Jawun Evans was also outstanding, scoring 22 points with five rebounds, four assists and three steals in 24 minutes of play.
The Cowboys were 14-of-28 from behind the three-point line, while the Shockers were only 3-of-17. Leyton Hammonds’ trey just 23 seconds into the game got it started to give OSU a 3-0 lead. The Cowboys pushed the lead to 10-1 a few minutes later and never looked back en route to the victory over the Shockers.
“We got off to a great start, a great first half,” Underwood said. “Our dominance on the glass … I was really pleased and impressed with. I thought our conditioning was off the chart. We had them tired. But again, it’s what we do every day. There are no days off in our program, so to speak.”
The Shockers entered the game getting an average of 48.4 points off the bench, but they only got 22 on Saturday. On the other hand, Carroll (22), Thomas Dziagwa (9), Brandon Averette (8) and Mitchell Solomon (3) combined for 42 bench points for the Cowboys.
“I can’t say enough about Thomas Dziagwa. I thought he did an unbelievable job,” Underwood said. “Thomas got us going against the press, and when we can attack and move the ball and not dribble, that’s hard to guard. “
Joining Carroll and Evans in double figures for the Cowboys were Leyton Hammonds (12 points) and Phil Forte (11).
“They made 19 field goals. We had 12 more field goals, and we outscore them 33 from the three-point line. That’s kind of the combination of winning games,” Underwood said.
“It was a team win. (Wichita State) is a very good basketball team. I think they’re 18 in the RPI. This is a basketball team that is very good and to come in here and play the way we did today, I’m impressed and I’m proud of this group.”
The Cowboys will be back in action Thursday for their final non-conference game of the season when they play Texas A&M-Corpus Christi at Gallagher-Iba Arena. Tip-off will be noon.