Latest News

Braun’s Career Night Leads Raiders Past IUPUI

Men’s Basketball Before the Game | Photo by Kay Bell | The Wright State Guardian

Dominance up close was the name of the game for Wright State University men’s basketball team on Wednesday night, as 54 points in the paint led the Raiders over the IUPUI Jaguars 103-71.

Standout night

Sophomore AJ Braun led the Raiders with 22 points on 8-9 shooting, as four Raiders finished with double-digit scoring. The Raider team would continue its offensive dominance all night, as WSU finished with 58% shooting from the field overall and 65% in the first half.

“My teammates were just finding me today,” Braun said. “I was fortunate just to get good looks from them and put the ball in the hoop. Things were just going my way today.”

Playing at home

The WSU team has always been good at showcasing local talent in its roster, and Wednesday night had several good performances for the local crowd.

Braun, who is from Dayton, led the game with 22 points and seven rebounds, and Amari Davis from Trotwood would come off the bench for 15 points and seven assists.

“There’s always a good feeling when you play well and win here,” Braun said. “Especially being from the area and having people come to your games, it’s a blessing. It’s something I’m grateful for.”

Fifth-year Andy Neff played some first minutes of the season on Wednesday after fans in the student section chanted for head coach Scott Nagy to put Neff into the game. Neff would score Raider point 100 to cheers from everyone in the Nutter Center.

Neff may get less playing time than the team stars, but the 6-foot-7 forward’s teammates still respect Neff’s work ethic and attitude, which make the team better.

“They come in and do what they’re supposed to do,” Davis said. “They don’t pout, they don’t complain about playing time. They just come in and make us better.”

Forward to Friday

The home win over IUPUI was a confidence boost for the Raiders, especially on offense, but the team will need to show up stronger on Friday night if it wants to beat Northern Kentucky. NKU currently sits third in the Horizon League with a 10-4 record. The Norse dominated the Raiders earlier in the season, beating WSU by 14 in Highland Heights. Braun explained some key points to Friday’s game. 

“Our defense obviously needs to improve a lot,” Braun said. “We gave up 71, which isn’t bad, but against a team like NKU, we’ve got to be really locked in on defense. That’s going to be a big emphasis for Friday.”

The team was nervous heading into the Norse game earlier in the season, but with momentum behind WSU, the Raiders will look to take the contest Friday night and continue its climb up the Horizon League table.

“The difference is defensively,” Nagy said. “Now, we weren’t great defensively tonight…but we have been the last five games…and our defense has gotten way better. Then offensively, we’re pretty good. If you can combine those things, you’re going to win.”

See the senior night action versus the NKU Norse on Friday, Feb. 10 at 9 p.m. in the Nutter Center.

Noah Kindig

Sports Reporter

Verified by MonsterInsights