LAHAINA, Hawaii — No. 6/6 Wichita State battles Marquette in Tuesday’s semifinal round at the Maui Jim Maui Invitational.
The winner advances to Wednesday’s championship game at 9:30 p.m. CT (5:30 p.m. HT), while the loser plays for third place at 7 p.m. CT (3 p.m. HT). Both games will air on ESPN2.
1 —- MAUI MISC.: This is the Shockers’ second Maui Invitational appearance and their first semifinal trip. They’re now 3-1 all-time at the Lahaina Civic Center. The 2010 team lost a quartfinal heartbreaker to eventual national champion UConn but rallied to beat Chaminade and Virginia for fifth-place. They later won the NIT… A championship game appearance would be the Shockers’ fourth in the last six years in regular season tournament play. They won the 2012 Cancun Challenge and the 2013 CBE Classic and were runner-up at the 2014 Diamond Head Classic.
2 —- COMEBACK KIDS: Down by as many as 18 points at the under-16:00 timeout, the Shockers rallied to defeat Cal, 92-82, in Monday’s quarterfinal. The comeback was WSU’s largest since January, 2014 when it rallied from 19 down in the final 12 minutes at Missouri State to keep their undefeated season alive at 17-0.
3 —– MORE LEFTOVERS: Shaquille Morris scored 19 of his career-high 25 points in the second half and swatted four shots to move into fourth-place on WSU’s career blocks chart with 106… Landry Shamet matched his own career-best with 23 points on 8-of-10 shooting and extended his streak of consecutive games with a three-pointer to 28, breaking Ron Baker’s school record… Gregg Marshall passed Ralph Miller for the program’s all-time lead in games coached (354 in 11 seasons)… Rashard Kelly grabbed seven of WSU’s 24 offensive rebounds against Cal. Both totals are Marshall Era bests. The latter was the third-highest by an American Athletic Conference team in the league’s five seasons.
4 —- THE MATCHUP: WSU looks to even the all-time series with Marquette, which has won 4 of the 7 previous meetings between the two. This is the first since Jan. 2, 1978… It’s a matchup between two of the nation’s best three-point shooting teams from a year ago. The Golden Eagles (1st, .429) and Shockers (8th, .403) both finished in the top-10 nationally in percentage… WSU’s Landry Shamet (72) and Conner Frankamp(73) and Marquette’s Markus Howard (82) and Andrew Rowsey (71) rank among the nation’s top returning three-point tandems.
5 —– ETC: The Shockers look to reach 4-0 for the fifth time in six years and for the 23rd time in the program’s 112 seasons… Since 2011-12, the Shockers are 64-13 (.831) in regular season non-conference games… WSU has won 15-straight regular season games, dating back to mid-January of last season.
*WSU is 17.7 on the boards through three games and has out-rebounded every opponent by double-figures.
*A trio of Shocker regulars have made over two-thirds of their shots from the field: Rauno Nurger (.696), Landry Shamet (.682) and Shaquille Morris (.676).
*Five Shockers own or share the lead on the American Athletic Conference individual leader boards: Shamet in 3-point percentage (9/12, .750), Morris in blocks per game (3.3), Frankamp in assist-to-turnover ratio (13-to-1), Brown in free throw percentage (6/6, 1.000) and Kelly in offensive rebounds per game (3.7).
SERIES RECORDS vs. WEDNESDAY OPPONENTS:
WSU vs. LSU: 5-1 —– WSU has five straight wins…WSU routed LSU last November in the Battle 4 Atlantis quarterfinals behind 15 points from Markis McDuffie, 12 points from Landry Shamet and a career-high seven assists from Conner Frankamp. The Shockers scored the first 11 points and led 46-19 at halftime… In the summer of 2006, with WSU coming off of a Sweet 16 appearance and LSU a trip to the Final Four, the teams agreed to a home-home-neutral series. The Shockers swept all three meetings… LSU’s lone series victory came in the 1981 Elite Eight in New Orleans against a Shocker squad bookended by future NBA standouts Cliff Levingston and Antoine Carr.
WSU vs. Notre Dame: 1-2 —– A potential rematch from the 2015 NCAA Sweet 16.