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No. 2 Wichita State rolls into MVC final
St. Louis, MO (SportsNetwork.com) - Cleanthony Early scored 20 points and No. 2 Wichita State rolled to a 67-42 win over Missouri State on Saturday that moved the unbeaten Shockers into the final of the Missouri Valley Conference tournament.
The Shockers (33-0) will face the winner of Saturday's Indiana State-Southern Illinois game in Sunday's final.
They are one win away from tying UNLV's 23-year-old record for best start to a season.
Tekele Cotton added 13 points for Wichita State, which held the fourth-seeded Bears (20-12) under 32 percent shooting. Gavin Thurman had nine points to lead Missouri State.
The Shockers haven't lost since falling to eventual champion Louisville in the Final Four last year. UNLV made it to the NCAA tournament perfect in 1990-91 and was 34-0 before losing to Duke in the Final Four.
The top-seeded Shockers beat Evansville by 22 on Friday in their tournament opener and led by as many as 38 on Saturday.
They had a 13-point lead with 5 1/2 minutes left in the first half and were up 33-19 at the break.
The Bears took the Shockers to overtime at home on Jan. 11, but Wichita State pulled out the 72-69 win to remain one of four unbeaten teams in the country at the time.
On Saturday, the Bears never got closer than 12 in the second half. Their only two losses in their last five games of the season came to Wichita State. They topped Illinois State by five on Friday to open the tournament.
Wichita State shot 50 percent (25-of-50) overall and 9-of-20 (45 percent) from 3-point range ... Early made three of his six 3-point attempts.
03/08 18:12:12 ET