WICHITA, Kan. — — Dexter Dennis took cowl amongst a gaggle of Houston gamers on an inbounds play within the last seconds and broke from the pack for a vital steal that helped Wichita State shock the sixth-ranked Cougars and take excessive spot within the American Athletic Conference.Tyson Etienne and Alterique Gilbert every scored 16 factors and Dennis added 12, main Wichita State to a 68-63 victory on Thursday evening.The Shockers (13-4, 9-2) moved previous Houston (17-3, 11-3) and into first place within the convention standings.The well timed steal by Dennis led to an unlikely victory for Wichita State.“I used to be sort of hiding a bit of bit, hiding behind somebody,” Dennis mentioned. “I knew he didn’t see me. And as quickly because the ball left his hand, I broke.”Dennis intercepted the ball close to midcourt, burst towards his basket and drew an intentional foul name that helped seal the win.The Shockers’ victory and transfer atop the convention was sudden for a group that misplaced seven gamers within the offseason and its head coach shortly earlier than the season began.“It felt legendary, in a bizarre means, to win to be trustworthy,” Dennis mentioned. “Just contemplating all now we have been by means of this 12 months, it felt wonderful.”DeJeon Jarreau led the Cougars with 16 factors. Quentin Grimes added 13 factors and Justin Gorham 10.Ricky Council added 11 factors for Wichita State, which had its first dwelling victory in opposition to a top-six opponent since beating No. 2 Louisville on Feb. 25, 1967. The Shockers additionally snapped a six-game dropping streak in opposition to Houston.Shockers interim coach Isaac Brown mentioned he was involved about three issues going into the sport: “Rebounds, rebounds, rebounds.”So, he was thrilled to see Wichita State outrebounded Houston 35-33.“I’m simply so enthusiastic about it,” Brown mentioned. “I believed we did an ideal job assembly the problem.”Houston led by as many as 12 factors within the first half earlier than Wichita State stormed again and minimize the deficit to 34-33 by halftime.Houston coach Kelvin Sampson mentioned that a part of the sport, which got here with Jarreau and Gorham on the bench for lengthy stretches, was key.“They made some robust photographs,” Sampson mentioned. “I imply robust photographs. And for those who make 10 3-pointers at dwelling, you’re most likely going to win.”Those 3-point photographs have been key.Gilbert hit consecutive 3-pointers to cap an 11-0 run by Wichita State initially of the second half. The Shockers led 44-34 and have been 9 of 13 from 3-point vary to that time.An spectacular stat for a group that entered the sport taking pictures 32.3% from the 3-point arc this season, rating 246th nationally.Sampson pointed to the play of Etienne — whom he referred to as, “perhaps one of the best guard in our convention” — and Gilbert as key.“We have been enjoying Shocker basketball within the second half,” Brown mentioned. “We have been getting out in transition, entering into units for sure guys. The guys believed in what we have been doing.”Sampson mentioned he was completely satisfied his group acquired again into the sport, however “getting outscrapped” is what he was fascinated by probably the most.“They have been simply more durable than we have been on the boards,” Sampson mentioned, “and I don’t know what number of occasions I’ve mentioned that during the last six years. Not many. But they have been robust.”GILBERT AND THE GANGWichita State was with out its two reserve level guards, Craig Porter and Trevin Wade, attributable to sickness and damage.While Etienne helped deal with among the level guard duties, Gilbert performed 31 minutes and dealt with to load properly, He was 6 of 11 from the ground, 3 of 4 from the 3-point line and added three assists.He persistently broke down Houston’s protection, resulting in inside photographs and Houston fouls.“Their backcourt is super, they usually performed properly tonight,” Sampson mentioned. “The distinction was on the free throw line. They have been 18 of 23 from the road, and we have been 5 of 11. We couldn’t preserve them off the road.”WHITE INAfter tearing the ACL in his proper knee in May, Houston senior ahead Fabian White was listed as redshirting this season.But White made his stunning return within the recreation, an enormous addition of expertise to an already deep Houston group.White entered the season with 98 profession video games performed, 52 of them begins. He averaged 9.3 factors and 5.5 rebounds final season.White rapidly made an affect, following a reverse layup with an help on a Grimes’ 3-pointer that gave Houston a 20-9 lead. He completed with three factors in 9 minutes.“This was a tough recreation for him to return in,” Sampson mentioned. “We have been planning on different video games for him to return again, however they acquired postponed.”BIG PICTUREHouston: The Cougars can nonetheless earn a share of the title, however current losses may have an effect on their NCAA Tournament seeding.Wichita State: The Shockers listened to pundits say they needed to beat Houston to have an opportunity at an NCAA Tournament at-large bid.UP NEXTHouston: Hosts Cincinnati on Sunday.Wichita State: At SMU on Feb. 25.——For extra AP faculty basketball protection: https://apnews.com/Collegebasketball and http://twitter.com/AP–Top25