WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) — The Wichita State Shockers are currently undefeated on the season after three close matchups at Koch Arena, and they are hitting the road for their first test away from home this weekend.
At 3-0 on the season, The Shockers have proven to be strong defensively, which has masked some of their shooting struggles. They are shooting just 39% from the field through the first three games this season.
Second-year Head Coach Isaac Brown will be leading his squad at the Roman Main Event, a tournament held at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas featuring Wichita State, Michigan, UNLV, and Arizona. The Shockers get Arizona first on Friday night.
“Arizona is the next team up, and they got a great basketball tradition,” Brown said. “We just want to go out and give a hundred percent and try to play a great game on both ends of the basketball, like offense, defense. We want to make sure we take good shots and just be up for the challenge.”
This game will be Brown’s 26th game as the head coach of the Shockers, and his 19-6 record is the best start for a coach in program history.
The Arizona Wildcats sport first-year head coach Tommy Lloyd, who came to Tucson by way of Gonzaga, where he was an assistant coach for 20 seasons.
Arizona is also sitting at 3-0, with wins over Northern Arizona, Texas — Rio Grande Valley, and North Dakota State. They are currently averaging 94 points per game and are winning by an average of 45 points in each contest.
This will be the toughest contest of the season so far for the Shockers, as Arizona is just as strong defensively as they are on the offensive end. In their last game against North Dakota State, who is expected to be an NCAA Tournament team come March, they held the Bison to 26% shooting from the floor and kept them to under 50 points.
Isaac Brown will get star guard Tyson Etienne back for this matchup after being held out of Tuesday’s game against Tarleton State due to an illness. The Englewood, New Jersey product has proven effective when healthy, hitting a deep game-winning three to lift the Shockers over Jacksonville State on opening night.
The game against Arizona is set to tip-off at 9 p.m. on Friday night at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas and will air on the ESPN family of networks.