Shockers reach .500 with win over SMU

Feb, 9, 2019; Wichita, Kansas, USA; during the game between Wichita State and Tulane at Koch Arena ©Kelly Ross

DALLAS, Texas (Go Shockers) -- Markis McDuffie scored 15 points and grabbed nine rebounds to lead Wichita State to a 67-55 victory at SMU on Sunday afternoon inside Moody Coliseum.

WSU (15-13, 8-8) has won seven of its last nine games following a 1-6 start to American Athletic Conference play. The Shockers are the first team in conference history to reach the eight-win mark after opening 1-6 or worse. Helped by USF's loss earlier in the day, WSU now owns sole possession of the sixth-place in the league standings.

McDuffie tied Jamie Thompson for 16th on WSU's career scoring list (1,359 points) and connected on his first three-point attempt to match Fred VanVleet for 10th-place on the school's all-time three-point field goal chart (141).

Jaime Echenique added eight points on 4-of-5 shooting to go with six rebounds and a block. He's swatted at least one shot in 13-straight games, breaking Shaquille Morris' Marshall Era mark. It's the longest block streak by a Shocker since Antoine Carr's 25-gamer in 1983.

Dexter Dennis scored 10 of his 12 points in the first half to help the Shockers pull away and added seven rebounds. He's reached double-figures in four of the last five games after doing so just four times in the first 23 games of the season.

Jamarius Burton finished with 10 points, five assists and one turnover. It was his fourth-straight game with at least five assists. The freshman has an impressive 29-to-6 ratio (4.83) over that span.

Erik Stevenson dished out a career-high six assists in 15 minutes.

WSU never trailed. An 11-0 run stretched an 11-10 lead to 22-10 near the midway point of the first half. Another 10-0 spurt before halftime stretched the lead to as many as 17.

The Shockers built on their 41-27 halftime advantage, despite a dip in shooting. They hit just 27 percent in the second half after connecting on 53 percent in the first 20 minutes.

SMU (13-15, 5-11) shot just 36.5 percent for the day. The Mustangs were a chilly 1-of-15 from three in the second half and just 3-of-26 for the game.

WSU out-rebounded SMU 40-35. The Shockers posted 17 assists on 25 baskets and committed just 10 turnovers.

NOTABLE:

Burton's 93 assists this year are third-most all-time by a Shocker true freshman. Only Joe Griffin (125 in 1987) and Bob Trogele (103 in 1976) have had more.
WSU has won three of its last four true road games following an 0-6 start.
The Shockers now own home-and-home sweeps of Tulsa and SMU. They'll have two more chances next week against ECU and Tulane.
WSU has won three-straight against SMU and now lead the all-time series 7-6. The Shockers are 2-4 at Moody Coliseum after consecutive wins.
Gregg Marshall moved to within five wins of the 500-mark for his career.

UP NEXT:

WSU plays its final regular season home game Tuesday night against ECU. Tip time is 8 p.m. CT on CBS Sports Network.
Seniors Markis McDuffie and Samajae Haynes-Jones will be honored afterward.
This is ECU's first-ever visit to Wichita. WSU won at ECU on Feb. 6 (65-49).
Tickets are still available through the Shocker Ticket Office (316-978-FANS) and online at goshockers.com/tickets.