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Porter, Pierre Key Road Win at Tulane

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By Wichita State University Athletics

 

NEW ORLEANS, LA. (goshockers.com) – Louisiana native Jaron Pierre Jr. scored a season-high 28 points in his return and Craig Porter Jr. celebrated his 23rd birthday with a triple-double as Wichita State held off Tulane, 83-76.

WSU (15-13, 8-8 American) won its fifth straight American Athletic Conference road game – its longest streak since joining the league — and moved to within a game of fifth-place Temple in the standings with two to play. The top-five finishers earn a bye in next month’s AAC tournament in Fort Worth, Texas.

Porter’s 15-points, 10-rebound, 10-assist stat line was just the second by a Shocker in the last 50 years. Toronto Raptors all-star Fred VanVleet delivered the other on Feb. 7, 2015 against Missouri State.

Pierre was 9-of-17 from the field, including 5-of-12 from deep.

James Rojas scored a career-high 22 points and cleared eight rebounds.

The Shockers shot 53.1%, helped by a 10-of-22 effort from long range, and converted easy looks in transition, outscoring the hosts 19-4 on fastbreaks.

Jalen Cook scored 30 points and hit eight of Tulane’s 15 threes.

The Shockers led wire-to-wire, upping the margin to as many as 17 points late in the first half, but the win was far from easy.

Tulane (17-9, 10-5) rallied from large deficits to win each of the three previous meetings, including an 18-point first half hole last month in Wichita, and nearly did so again on Sunday.

The Green Wave used a 15-2 run to get within four just before halftime and to within 69-68 near the 6:00-mark of the second half.

WSU cracked down defensively, holding Tulane to just three baskets the rest of the way. Rojas had eight points during a 14-5 Shocker spurt that pushed the lead safely back to double-digits.


NOTABLE:

Porter’s 10 assists were a new career high. He’s the first player in Shocker history to bank least six dimes in six straight games.


UP NEXT:

The Shockers are on the road again Thursday at No. 1 Houston (6 p.m. CT, ESPN2) then return home for their regular season finale against South Florida (Sunday, Mar. 5, 1 p.m. CT, ESPNU).