Monday afternoon GCU headed to Kansas City for the Hall of Fame Classic. Their is four teams taking part of the event with Wichita State, GCU, San Francisco and Northern Iowa. All 4 teams are talented.
GCU matched up with Wichita State after San Fran defeated Northern Iowa.
Wichita State defeated Grand Canyon 55-43.
Here are my takeaways from the game:
The big story line in the game is the size of Wichita State. How will GCU hold up inside? GCU would need to box out their bigs for a chance to win.
They did get beat in the paint for the most part. Wichita State grabbed offensive rebounds for scores.
GCU actually defended very well and held the Shockers to only 38% shooting.
Wichita State played zone versus GCU and it affected the flow of GCU’s offense. GCU had many end of the shot clock attempts that unfortunately almost always resulted in misses. They had a few shot clock violations as well.
When they got the ball into the middle of the zone and Wichita State caved in, then GCU would kick it to an open shooter. Simple ball fakes helped but overall GCU struggled scoring.
24-17 edge for Wichita State in the half, which was essentially why they had a 30-24 halftime lead. 2nd half GCU teamed rebounded and it helped but they did not take advantage on the scoreboard. 42-38 Wichita State led the way.
Physical Game to Start
The physicality of the game set the tone the whole way, which favored Wichita State. 1st TV timeout in the 1st half had a 14-11 Wichita State lead in a seesaw battle. Then 2nd timeout was only 16-11 with 7:24 to play.
Points were very hard to come by to start this game with the overall physicality being displayed by both teams. Wichita State had some fast break scores but struggled scoring to start the game.
Wichita State pressed GCU at times and GCU took advantage of it to get into the lane. Ray Harrison was the benefactor a couple times but they realized and stopped pressing smartly in the 2nd half.
Noah Baumann (Pictured)
Noah Baumann continued with his 6th man role and it seems to fit him. He lets the game come to him more and lets it fly. He hit two 3’s in the 1st half plus one from mid-range with 8 pts.
he scored a floater in the 2nd half as Wichita State sprinted over to get him off the arc and he went by.
He finished as the only double digit scorer with 10 out of the 43 points.
Crashed the glass in the 2nd half for scores and took a charge. He had energy going hard despite the loss.
He scored 6 points with 8 rebounds.
Shooting always seems to determine outcomes of games and the first half GCU shot 3-12 and Wichita State were 4-13 1st half.
GCU finished with 4-23 from the arc and Wichita State was 6-23.
6’2 Sr W Craig Porter Jr
The Wichita State senior leads the team in scoring and rebounding. He is super active getting downhill to score and is active on the glass.
GCU struggled guarding him at times. At halftime, Wichita State led 30-24 and Porter Jr had 9 points, 5 rebounds and 2 assists.
Porter Jr finished with 14 points ,10 rebounds, 3 assists and a career high 4 blocks.
Turnovers Leading to Points
The Shockers scored 6 points off of the Antelopes 6 1st half turnovers, which was the difference in the game at 30-24. GCU finished with 12 turnovers.
He crashed the glass with force and kept plays alive in the 1st half to keep Wichita State within range of the game not getting out of hand in the 1st half. He finished with 6 points and 7 rebounds.
Points in the Paint
Wichita State won the paint 34-16 over GCU. It was the end story line of why they won. Their overall size bullied GCU inside the trenches.
Athleticism and Length
Wichita State’s overall size, athleticism and length bothered GCU’s offense throughout the game. Opportunities were there, but for the most part, the Shockers bothered their offense.
Too Many Missed Opportunities
They had their moments to make shots and simply just missed. Maybe tired legs from the travel but they will have to make shots versus a talented Northern Iowa team tomorrow.