Wichita State Advances to Final Four Behind Stifling Defense

By Jeric Griffin

Take your pick of incredible stats from Wichita State‘s Elite Eight win over Ohio State, but all of them are incredible. The Buckeyes had their lowest scoring half of the season in the first half (22 points), they shot 24 percent from the field in the first half (31 percent for the game) and hit only five of 25 three-point attempts. In other words, the Shockers shut Ohio State down.

Wichita State played a rough game against Ohio State as bodies were flying all over the floor throughout the game. The Shockers blocked nine shots and recorded eight steals in the contest while absolutely shutting down Buckeyes star point guard Aaron Craft. The Buckeyes have thrived with the three ball all year, but Craft went two for seven while the entire team shot only 20 percent from downtown. Wichita State forward Carl Hall was knocked seemingly out of the game twice, but persevered through the pain to block six shots, pull down four boards and score eight points. He was easily the player of the game.

Really and truly, Wichita State hasn’t gotten much respect in the 2013 NCAA Tournament. They are easily the best Cinderella story in this year’s bracket, even though teams like Florida Gulf Coast have been stealing all the headlines. Now no one can deny the Shockers’ their attention as they’re the second team to advance to the Final Four. Now they have their work cut out for them as they await the winner of Louisville and Duke. It will take some more incredible defense for Wichita State to have a chance to knock off the winner of the rugged Midwest Region.

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