Saturday’s box score
No. 16 WSU 93, Emporia St. 50
Glad to be here
Emporia State guard Terrence Moore enjoys plenty of good memories at Koch Arena. He played on Heights teams that won two Class 6A titles on the court and is a former teammate of WSU’s Evan Wessel. Moore came back Saturday and scored 15 points, making 6 of 11 shots, and grabbing five rebounds.
In a pro-Shocker crowd, he had his supporters. One friend, wearing WSU gear, cheered from the student section and tried to quiet fans when they chanted “airball” at Moore.
“It’s a great experience to come back and play against the Shockers,” he said. “I have family back here that was excited for me to come back and play.”
The Hornets, who counted Saturday’s game as an exhibition, had little time to worry about the defeat. They open the regular season at Rockhurst (Mo.) on Sunday night in Kansas City, just a few miles from where they knocked off NCAA Division I UMKC on Friday afternoon in an exhibition.
Moore likes the challenges of playing higher-level teams.
“Playing a Division I school, we match ourselves up, how we match up against bigger teams, better teams,” he said. “The conference championship is three games in three days, so this is a great experience to play three in three days.”
Not so fast
While the Shockers ended up with 93 points, guard Ron Baker pointed out the first game’s first 10 minutes or so didn’t go so smoothly. WSU led 15-11 with 10:33 remaining. Baker blamed the slow start on the team’s late-in-the-shot-clock offense.
“Our breakdown offense wasn’t too good,” he said. “The first 10 minutes, we just weren’t hitting shots, but our breakdown offense wasn’t were it needs to be for (Western Kentucky). We were lucky we hit some shots here and there after that to get a run going.”
Three-pointers by Cleanthony Early and Fred VanVleet sparked the offense and WSU finished the half on a 34-15 run in the final 10:30.
• WSU won its 18th straight home opener and its 12th straight season opener.
• WSU is 41-28 against Emporia State in regular-season games. The teams last played a non-exhibition game (from WSU’s perspective) in 1954-55, a 72-47 Shocker win.