St. Mary's Gaels vs. North Dakota State Bison Pick-Odds-Prediction 11/14/13
North Dakota State Bison (1-0) at St. Mary's Gaels (2-0)
College Basketball: Thursday, November 14, 2013 at 11:30 pm (McKeon Pavilion)
The Line: St. Mary's Gaels -6.5 -- Over/Under: See the Latest Odds
The North Dakota State Bison travel to Saint Mary’s to play the Gaels on Thursday night.
North Dakota State won their season opener 93-49 over Viterbo University. Viterbo took a 9-8 lead 7 minutes into the game, but the Bison outscored them 35-7 over the remainder of the 1st half. North Dakota State shot an impressive 53% from the field and a whopping 52.6% from three-point range. Senior G Mike Felt led the Bison with 23 points, shooting 8 of 13 from the floor and nailing 7 of 11 three pointers. Senior G Taylor Braun had 16 points and 5 rebounds for North Dakota State. Braun suffered a season ending injury last year, which dashed the team’s hopes of a regular season championship. Freshman F Dexter Werner added 12 points and 9 rebounds in his debut for the Bison. This is a Bison team that should win the Summit League and is experienced with three seniors and a junior in the starting lineup. This will be North Dakota State’s first test of the season as they travel into a hostile environment.
The Saint Mary’s Gaels are 2-0 after beating the Akron Zips 85-63 at home on Tuesday night. The game started at midnight local time and ended after 2 a.m. Saint Mary’s led by seven points at halftime and used a 15-1 run midway through the second half to pull away. The Gaels shot over 51% from the field and over 41% from three-point range. SMU also attempted 36 free throws and made 32 of them. Junior F Brad Waldow scored 16 points, while Senior G James Walker added 15 points. Senior G Stephen Holt chipped in with 14 points, shooting 12-for-12 from the line. Sophomore G Jordan Giusti, who figures to play a bigger role this year, scored a career high 12 points for the Gaels. This is the first time in four years that Saint Mary’s has been without G Mathew Dellavedova, the team’s leader in each of the past two seasons. However, the Gaels still have three seniors and one junior in the starting lineup so they are not without experience. Holt will be counted on to carry the load in the backcourt offensively, while Giusti will provide a defensive punch. Both players will need to play well on Thursday night against a tough Bison squad.
This game sets up to be a good matchup between two teams that have a good amount of experience and love to shoot the ball from outside. North Dakota State struggled on the road last year and playing inside the McKeon Pavilion as a visitor isn’t easy. However, I think North Dakota State has enough fire power and experience to handle the pressure. Saint Mary’s may win the game, but the Bison keep this game close down to the end.