Wichita State Shockers

No. 10 Wichita State cruises past Hawaii Pacific in exhibition (+video)

Wichita State's Ron Baker drives to the basket against Hawaii Pacific in the first half of Saturday’s exhibition game at Koch Arena.
Wichita State's Ron Baker drives to the basket against Hawaii Pacific in the first half of Saturday’s exhibition game at Koch Arena. The Wichita Eagle

If foul calls are plentiful this season, No. 10 Wichita State should benefit from the presence of a 6-foot-8 whistle-drawing magnet in senior Anton Grady. He shot 10 free throws in 10 minutes in Saturday’s exhibition game, one week after drawing numerous fouls in a scrimmage against Oklahoma State.

“I guess we could say it’s trending now,” he said. “I’d go for that.”

Grady helped the Shockers rumble through Saturday with guard Fred VanVleet on the bench with a strained left hamstring. WSU defeated NCAA Division II Hawaii Pacific 91-57 on Saturday at Koch Arena, six days before its regular-season opener against Charleston Southern.

The offense struggled at times in the first half without VanVleet. Grady, however, provided a sense of comfort with his low-post scoring. Guards gave him the ball quite often, confident in his ability to make something good happen. He made 7 of 10 foul shots, drawing contact with a variety of moves, and scored 13 points on 3-of-4 shooting.

“He doesn’t get that many free throws in practice, because we don’t blow the whistle like that,” WSU coach Gregg Marshall said. “He really, really wants the basketball. He calls for the ball, which is something I wish some of the other post players would learn from.”

That knack for drawing fouls is handy at all times, perhaps doubly so in a season in which officials are charged with cleaning up contact by defenders. Grady should be able to use that directive to his advantage. In 10 minutes, Grady showed why his arrival from Cleveland State is seen as a crucial piece for the Shockers.

“Our offense is keyed around having a big man that can score,” guard Ron Baker said. “If teams want to double down there, Anton is a good player and he can pass the ball out of the post. We can get open shots on the outside just from him making good decisions with the ball.”

Baker scored 11 points and, acting as the primary point guard with VanVleet out, handed out four assists. Freshman guard Ty Taylor made 2 of 4 threes to score 11 points. Freshman guard Landry Shamet started and added 10 points for WSU.

Joel Feigler led Hawaii Pacific with 15 points, making 5 of 6 shots.

The Shockers made 29 of 58 shots and 7 of 18 three-pointers. They made 26 of 31 free throws, outscoring the Sharks by 14 points. Hawaii Pacific committed 17 turnovers and made 19 of 55 shots.

VanVleet strained his left hamstring a week ago in a scrimmage and didn’t practice all week. He is mobile enough to ride a stationary bike, shoot jump shots and jog lightly. He isn’t doing any taxing activities and there was no sense risking more serious injury.

Marshall said he expects VanVleet to practice soon and likely be ready for Friday’s opener.

“He’ll start easing back in this week,” Marshall said. “Unless he has a recurrence, he’ll play (Friday).”

Wichita State stumbled through some offensive possessions without VanVleet and when Baker sat. The defense, for long stretches, remained disruptive with Marshall sending waves of bouncy players at the Sharks.

“Their pressure bothered us,” Hawaii Pacific coach Darren Vorderbruegge said. “That’s typical WSU. They kind of smell blood in the water and today I was the water.”

A 14-2 run gave the Shockers a 17-12 lead, capped by defensively by a stand that forced Hawaii Pacific’s Luke Hager to force up an airball late in the shot clock.

Baker made two baskets and passed to Markis McDuffie for a layup to build a 23-13 edge and force a Sharks timeout.

The Shockers pulled away late in the half, a run started by a strong sequence by Zach Brown. He scored on a drive, blocked a shot and grabbed the ball and drove the length of the court for another layup. WSU closed the half on a 12-3 run to lead 42-27.

Baker scored nine first-half points with Grady and Rashard Kelly both adding seven. The Shockers committed eight first-half turnovers, leading to 11 points for the Sharks.

WSU started the second half with a 14-5 run for a 56-32 lead. That allowed Marshall to play his bench most of the second half. Taylor scored all of his points in the second half.

Worth noting — Sophomore forward Rauno Nurger did not play in order to preserve redshirt eligibility. First-year Shockers could play without ending their redshirt eligibility … Fourteen Shockers played, with walk-on Brett Barney the last to enter. He came in early in the second half and scored on a short hook and took a charge. Marshall said Barney is also considering a redshirt season. He missed around six weeks of practices with a stress reaction in his foot. Transfers Conner Frankamp and Peyton Allen are not eligible to play outside competition. Frankamp becomes eligible on Dec. 12. Allen will sit out all season.

Reach Paul Suellentrop at 316-269-6760 or psuellentrop@wichitaeagle.com. Follow him on Twitter: @paulsuellentrop.

HAWAII PAC.

Min

FG-A

FT-A

OR-TR

A

PF

PT

Feigler

27

5-6

2-2

1-6

0

4

15

Nordquist

24

1-4

5-8

4-1

1

2

7

Hager

22

3-8

2-4

1-6

0

4

9

Orr

20

2-6

0-4

0-0

2

1

4

Martin

23

2-8

0-1

0-0

2

1

5

Bettis

8

0-1

1-2

0-0

2

1

5

Looney

24

2-6

2-3

0-2

1

3

6

Lascalles

20

1-5

0-0

0-2

3

2

2

Baker

12

1-4

0-0

1-1

1

1

3

Guy

20

2-6

0-0

1-3

2

4

5

Totals

 

19-55

12-24

11-30

12

25

57

Percentages: FG .345, FT .500. 3-Point Goals: 7-27, .259 (Feigler 3-4, Hager 1-2, Baker 1-4, Guy 1-4, Martin 1-5, Nordquist 0-1, Lascalles 0-3). Team Rebounds: 5. Blocked Shots: 0. Turnovers: 17 (Hager 4, Martin 3, Nordquist 2, Bettis 2, Looney 2, Team 2, Orr, Lasalles). Steals: 6 (Nordquist 3, Prr 2, Looney). Technical Fouls: None.

WICHITA ST.

Min

FG-A

FT-A

OR-TR

A

PF

PT

Grady

10

3-4

7-10

1-1

1

3

13

Morris

17

3-4

0-0

1-3

0

0

6

Wessel

9

1-1

0-0

0-0

0

2

3

Shamet

24

3-6

3-3

1-4

2

3

10

Baker

22

4-8

3-4

0-3

4

1

11

Kelly

15

1-2

4-4

1-4

0

0

7

Brown

14

3-4

2-2

0-2

2

5

9

Bush

8

1-2

2-2

0-0

0

2

4

Taylor

18

3-7

3-4

1-2

1

1

11

Barney

8

2-3

0-0

0-1

1

1

5

Simon

9

0-2

0-0

2-3

1

0

0

Wamukota

13

0-3

0-0

3-7

0

0

0

Hamilton

14

3-8

2-2

1-4

0

1

8

McDuffie

19

2-4

0-0

2-6

3

1

4

Totals

 

29-58

26-31

13-44

15

20

91

Percentages: FG .500, FT .839. 3-Point Goals: 7-18, .389 (Taylor 2-4, Wessel 1-1, Kelly 1-1, Brown 1-1, Barney 1-1, Shamet 1-2, Baker 0-1, Bush 0-1, Simon 0-2, Hamilton 0-2, McDuffie 0-2). Team Rebounds: 4. Blocked Shots: 5 (Morris, Baker, Brown, Wamukota, McDuffie) Turnovers: 14 (Baker 3, Wamukota 3, Brown 2, Taylor 2, Grady, Morris, Kelly, Simon). Steals: 8 (Baker 2, Taylor 2, Morris, Wessel, Hamilton, McDuffie). Technical Fouls: None.

Hawaii Pacific

27

30

57

Wichita St.

42

49

91

A—10,506. Officials—John Hendricks, Nathan Bemis, Owen Shortt.

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