1. With the loss Wichita State falls to 9-2 in the Missouri Valley Conference. Eight of the ten Valley teams have at least 5 losses in conference, which leaves the Shockers and Creighton battling it out for the 1-seed in the Valley Tourney. Creighton held serve yesterday and now leads with a 10-1 record. At kenpom.com Creighton is projecting with a 15-3 conference record, while Wichita State projects to 14-4. They meet, at Creighton, on February 11th.
2. The Shockers shot 31-76 (40.1%) on the night. Removing the 3s (7-25, 28%) they shot 24-51 (47.1%) on 2s. This from a team that is 21st nationally converting 2s (53.5%) and against a team that was 192nd at stopping them. In a triple-overtime game one basket is all the difference, so look to the Shockers missed 2s as a likely culprit for this loss.
3. Wichita State went to the line 19 times, while attempting 76 field goals. That’s a 25% FT Rate (FTA/FGA) when they entered the game at 39.9%. Worse, Drake sends teams to the line at a higher rate than 322 Division I teams. Home cooking? I didn’t think so while I watched the game. But Shockers fans won’t be happy that Drake went to the line 36 times on 73 shots (49.3%).
4. Forward Ben Simons doesn’t get the recognition he deserves. On the season he’s making 42% of his 3s, 55% of his 2s, 89% of his FTs and has played over 88% of his team’s minutes. In their win over Wichita State the Drake junior had a career high 29 points. Unfortunately (for him) the only other game being broadcast at the same time was UNLV vs Air Force, and that game also went into overtime. So not as many people saw his performance as otherwise might have.
5. The official attendance was 4,895. How many people will claim to have been at this game?
Here’s the last possession of regulation where Drake ties the game:
Here is Ben Smith’s only 3-pointer of the game, to force triple OT.