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Valparaiso Crusaders vs. Wisc-Milwaukee Panthers Pick-Odds-Prediction 3/7/14

Wisc-Milwaukee Panthers (18-13) at Valparaiso Crusaders (18-14)

College Basketball: Friday, March 7, 2014 at 9:30 pm (Resch Center)

The Line: Valparaiso Crusaders -2.5 -- Over/Under: See the Latest Odds


Storyline: Valparaiso and Milwaukee face off in the second round of the Horizon League Tournament after each came away with decisive victories in their first round games.

The Breakdown:  Valpo topped Illinois-Chicago 73-63 Tuesday in its first round contest behind a game-high 29 points and 8 rebounds from freshman F Alec Peters. Senior G LaVonte Dority finished with 12 points and 3 steals and freshman G Lexus Williams added 9 points and 3 rebounds. The Crusaders outshot the Flames from the floor 46.8 percent to 36.5 percent and from outside the arc 41.7 percent to 21.4 percent. Valparaiso also converted 24 of 38 from the free throw line and forced 15 turnovers. The Crusaders pulled away at the midway point of the first half, employing a 16-5 run that resulted in a 39-28 lead at the break. UIC trimmed the lead to 59-56 at the 6:29 mark of the second half, but could get no closer.

Valparaiso Crusaders vs. Wisc-Milwaukee Panthers Pick-Odds-Prediction 3/7/14

David Manning-USA TODAY Sports

Meanwhile, Milwaukee scored an 83-73 victory over Detroit in its first round game Tuesday. The Panthers shot an accurate 51.0 percent from the floor and connected on 9 of 25 from behind the arc to Detroit’s 51.1 percent from the floor and 5 of 13 from distance. The Panthers also finished with a 27-25 advantage on the boards and converted 25 of 29 from the free throw line. Senior G Jordan Aaron scored a team-high 16 points and dished out 6 assists, junior G Steve McWhorter had 15 points, 7 rebounds and 5 assists, and senior F Kyle Kelm added 13 points and 4 boards.

Rick’s Pick: The line in this one is currently set at -2.5 for Valparaiso. Valpo swept the season series with Milwaukee, topping them by decisive double-digit margins in both games. Look for the Crusaders to make it three in a row and cover.

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Valparaiso -2.5

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