The No. 9 Wichita State Shockers will take on the No. 13 La Salle Explorers later on tonight in the Sweet 16, but it is the Shockers’ three-point shooting that could really make a big difference in this one.
Although Wichita State was able to beat the No. 8 Pittsburgh Panthers by only making 2-20 from behind the arc, its three-point shooting fueled the offense in the victory over the No. 1 Gonzaga Bulldogs in the third round of the 2013 NCAA Tournament.
The Shockers dropped 14 threes against the Bulldogs and shot an impressive 50 percent from behind the arc.
There are six players on this team that have made 20 or more threes per game, which could be the difference against the Explorers. Malcolm Armstead has made the most, with 57 on the season. Although it is not always the best idea to live and die by the three-ball, if it is going in it is going in.
Ron Baker and Cleanthony Early combined for eight threes against Gonzaga and they both dropped 16 points a piece. If they can do that again against La Salle in the Sweet 16, they will likely be moving on to the Elite Eight.
Whether the case, the Shockers will still have to rely on their defense in this one. In two tournament games, Wichita State is giving up 62.5 points per game, which is very impressive. If this team has an advantage in this game, it could very well be its three-point shooting. Now it is time to see if the shots will fall.
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