PEORIA, Ill. (AP) — Fred VanVleet made two free throws with 4.6 seconds left, helping No. 16 Wichita State hold on for a 62-59 victory at Bradley on Wednesday night.
The Shockers went without a field goal for the final 12 1/2 minutes in their first game since Saturday’s 70-54 loss at Northern Iowa. After VanVleet’s clutch foul shots, Evan Wessel stole Bradley’s ensuing inbounds pass to help Wichita State hold on for the win.
Ron Baker had 14 points, five rebounds and five assists for the Shockers (20-3, 10-1 Missouri Valley), who led 35-22 at halftime. Tekele Cotton and Darius Carter had 10 points apiece.
Bradley (7-17, 2-9) has lost three in a row and eight of nine. Tramique Sutherland scored 18 points for the conference’s last-place team.
The Braves trailed 59-51 with 3:02 remaining, but Donte Thomas made two foul shots and Josh Cunningham had a big dunk, sparking an 8-1 run. Sutherland’s two foul shots with 5.1 seconds left got Bradley within one.
Wichita State has won 28 of its last 29 Missouri Valley games.
Bradley senior Auston Barnes had 13 points, 10 rebounds and three steals. Reserve Omari Grier added 12 points.
VanVleet, limited to seven first-half minutes by foul trouble, finished with eight points.
Wichita State: The Shockers shot 47.6 percent from the field, compared to 35.7 percent for the Braves. … The Shockers have won their last 11 games against the Braves.
Bradley: Coach Geno Ford dropped to 44-79 in four years with the Braves.
Wichita State hosts Missouri State on Saturday.
Bradley is at Evansville on Saturday.
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