Notes from Wichita's State's win over Bradley on Wednesday:
Clearing the bench
Wichita State coach Gregg Marshall seized the opportunity to play his reserves. Eleven Shockers played 10 or more minutes. Three starters played fewer than 20.
Junior forward James Anacreon made the biggest impression of the deep reserves. He scored five points and had three steals in 11 minutes. He showed quickness on the perimeter that can help the Shockers.
"James Anacreon gave us a lift," Marshall said. "He got a couple of deflections and runouts. We were able to shoot a high percentage because we were getting some transition baskets."
Marshall was also happy with center Ehimen Orukpe, who scored a career-high seven points and grabbed six rebounds. He made three of four shots, one on a nifty reverse layup after he faked a pass.
Fear the beard
WSU center Garrett Stutz looks like a hockey player working on a playoff beard. He is sporting a growth of facial hair that will look new to fans who haven't seen him since Dec. 19.
"I was meaning to shave it on this road trip, but I forgot my razor," he said. "I might grow it out. I haven't thought about it yet."
Stutz turned in WSU's most efficient outing. He scored 14 points, making 5 of 6 shots and all four of his free throws. He added 10 rebounds and two assists with no turnovers in 19 minutes.
Marshall loved his outlet passes, comparing them to ones thrown by NBA star Kevin Love or former Louisville star Wes Unseld.
"Garrett had some outlets tonight that I had not seen," Marshall said. "Not that he can't do it, but I've not seen it in a game."
Eyes on Fred
Marshall and assistant Chris Jans watched future Shocker Fred Van Vleet on Tuesday in Chicago. Van Vleet scored 22 points in Rockford (Ill.) Auburn's 75-47 win at Proviso West.
While Van Vleet didn't have a great shooting game, Marshall enjoyed watching a guard with good court vision.
"Fred's team won, that's No. 1," Marshall said. "He is a leader. He is a steadying force. He can really, really pass the basketball."
Van Vleet, a point guard who signed with WSU in November, made 16 of 20 free throws. He also grabbed nine rebounds and handed out five assists, according to the Chicago Tribune. Due to NCAA rules, Marshall couldn't talk to Van Vleet because he is playing in a tournament. He was able to talk to parents and coaches.
WSU assistant coach Greg Heiar enjoyed a reunion in Peoria. Around 25 friends and family members traveled from the Iowa towns of Dubuque, about 170 miles away, and Clinton, about 115 miles. Bradley assistant coach Jaden Unken was an assistant under Heiar for two seasons at Chipola (Fla.) College.... Bradley used a five-point possession to cut the lead to 51-33 in the second half. Taylor Brown scored all of them, two free throws after a technical foul on Carl Hall and a three-point play.... WSU guard David Kyles returned to the starting lineup after a one-game absence, replacing Ben Smith. Kyles scored 11 points, making 3 of 9 threes. He went 3 for 21 from behind the arc last season in three wins over Bradley. Smith scored eight points.... WSU's 39-point margin of victory is its biggest in an MVC game since it defeated West Texas State 103-61 during the 1972-73 season, a 42-point win.... WSU owns a four-game win streak over Bradley for the third time in series history. The Shockers last won four in a row from 2003-05.