The Shockers took over the game from the very beginning, ripping off a 17-3 run that put La Salle on its heels for the rest of the night. Wichita State imposed its will in the paint, scoring layups at will. Carl Hall scored 14 of his points in the first half alone, and the team took over the glass, grabbing 25 rebounds to La Salle's eight. The Shockers went into the locker room up 38-22 and looked to be coasting into the next round.
The Explorers started to show some life in the second half, going on an 18-7 run while Wichita went cold to get back within 11, but they never could pull close enough to make it a competitive game. The Shockers went into clock-killing mode halfway through the second half and Malcolm Armstead caught fire, scoring nine points within a two-and-a-half minute stretch to provide the dagger.
Wichita State shot 45.5 percent from the floor and were utterly dominant on the boards, out-rebounding La Salle 43-23. The Explorers struggled to find the bucket, making only 35.7 of their field goals and 7 of 18 three-pointers.
Armstead led the Shockers with 18 points and four assists. Hall wasn't far behind, finishing with 16 points and hauling in eight rebounds. He also had four blocked shots. Ramon Galloway was held in check for La Salle, managing 11 points and shooting a poor 4 of 15 from the field. Jerrell Wright and Tyrone Garland led the Explorers with 16 points each.
Wichita State will play the Ohio State Buckeyes on Saturday in the West regional final. The Shockers haven't made the Final Four since 1965.