Wichita State leads big early, falls late in OT loss to Tulane

Dec 17, 2022; Wichita, Kansas, USA;  ©KellyRoss
Dec 17, 2022; Wichita, Kansas, USA; ©KellyRoss(©KellyRoss | Kelly Ross)
Published: Jan. 26, 2023 at 12:13 AM CST
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WICHITA, Kan. (KWCH) - The Wichita State men’s basketball team was making shots and building on a lead that ballooned to an 18-point advantage late in the first half against Tulane. Wednesday night in Koch Arena, the Shockers came out hot and were playing arguably their most complete game of the season, but they couldn’t sustain the production in an agonizing home loss to Tulane, 95-90 in overtime.

The problem: the strong lead was built before halftime and wasn’t insurmountable for a Tulane team capable of shooting a high percentage and cashing in on free throws. The Green Wave trailed by 13 at halftime, got back into it and even built a few slight leads in the second half before ultimately taking control in overtime, escaping Wichita with the five-point win.

A Gus Okafor three-pointer in the final seconds of the first half expanded the Shocker lead to 13 from 10, but the Green Wave went into the break facing a manageable deficit. A 9-0 Tulane run out of the gate in the second half forced a Wichita State timeout inside 16-and-a-half minutes to play. The rest of the way in regulation, the Shockers led by as many as six points and trailed by as much as four.

The Shockers trailed by three, 74-71 with time running out. A Jaykwon Walton three-pointer with 10 seconds left ultimately sent the game into overtime. In that final five minutes, Wichita State couldn’t get a stop and wasn’t able to match Tulane shot-for-shot.

Wichita State (10-10, 3-5 American Athletic Conference), rolled in stretches, led by three strong scoring performances from Walton, Jaron Pierre Jr. and Kenny Pohto with 24, 18 and 17 points respectively.

Jaylen Forbes scored 25 points and Jalen Cook scored six of his 20 points in overtime for Tulane, now 13-7 overall and 6-3 in the AAC.