WICHITA, Kan. -- Once Wichita State got rolling, Bradley was no match for the 20th-ranked Shockers.
Nick Wiggins scored 12 points and fueled a 16-0 run in the second half with three 3-pointers as No. 20 Wichita State completed a regular-season sweep of Bradley with a 73-39 victory Saturday night.Jake White added 11 points for the Shockers (19-2, 8-1 Missouri Valley Conference), who won their 19th consecutive home game and ensured themselves of starting the second half of their conference schedule in sole possession of the MVC lead."The thing that Wichita State is so good at -- probably better than any team in our league -- is when they smell some blood in the water, they hit another level of energy," Bradley coach Geno Ford said. "The crowd is a significant part of it. This is as good of a college atmosphere as you'll play in."Cleanthony Early and Malcolm Armstead each added 10 points for Wichita State.Walt Lemon Jr. led Bradley (12-9, 4-5) with 14 points.Demetric Williams provided the first big spark for WSU. Williams made two free throws with 14 seconds remaining in the first half, then stole the ball from Bradley's Jake Eastman and converted it into a driving layup just before time expired to give the Shockers a 32-23 lead."It got the ball rolling," said Anthony, who scored in double figures for the 16th time this season. "We just tried to keep it going from there and build a bigger lead."WSU defeated Bradley for the seventh consecutive time, adding to its longest winning streak in series history. The Shockers led 39-30 with 15:20 remaining, but Early and Wiggins launched the game-breaking run as Bradley went more than 6 minutes without a field goal while Wichita State extended its advantage to 59-32.After a sluggish start, Wichita State shot 51 percent from the field (26 of 51) and limited Bradley to 32 percent.The Shockers took their first double-digit lead at 34-23 on Tekele Cotton's basket with 19:03 remaining. It took another 5 minutes for Wichita State to begin pulling away."They were doing a great job of keeping the tempo down and milking the clock down in the first half," WSU coach Gregg Marshall said. "Once we got it into a full-court game, it was more to our advantage in front of our home crowd."After Early made two free throws, Wiggins converted Armstead's steal into a fast-break dunk for a 43-30 lead. Wiggins sandwiched two 3-pointers around Anthony's layup, and Carl Hall scored off a Bradley turnover to stretch WSU's lead to 53-32 with 11:29 to play.Wichita State also finished the first half on a 10-2 run to build a 32-23 lead.Demetric Williams provided the big spark during WSU's run. He made two free throws with 14 seconds remaining, then stole the ball from Jake Eastman and converted it into a driving layup just before time expired.The Shockers, who defeated Bradley 69-63 on the road earlier this month, struggled to gain the upper hand for most of the opening half. Neither team led by more than four points in the first 18 minutes. WSU, which made just five of its first 15 shots, reached 50 percent by halftime by making seven of its last nine.Lemon, Bradley's leading scorer, kept the Braves close in the first half with 10 points, including two 3-pointers. The Braves made just two field goals over the last 8:34 of the first half and were outrebounded 20-12 before the break.