Patriot League Round One-Holy Cross Crusaders vs. Loyola Greyhounds - 3/3/15 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction
Loyola Greyhounds (11-18) at Holy Cross Crusaders (12-15)
College Basketball: Tuesday, March 3, 2015 at 7:00 pm (Hart Recreation Center)
The Line: Holy Cross Crusaders -4 -- Over/Under: See the Latest Odds
The Holy Cross Crusaders host the Loyola (MD) Greyhounds in the first round of the Patriot League postseason.
USA TODAY Sports
It wasn’t all that long ago that the Loyola (MD) Greyhounds were one of the top teams in the MAAC and represented that conference in the Big Dance. Fast forward to the present and the team is 11-18 overall an 7-11 in league play and battling in a play in game to advance to the quarterfinals. The reason this has come about is the offense struggles to break 60 points and the defense can’t make those numbers work. The Greyhounds have been outscored 66-59 and have dropped six of eight with their biggest win probable being a two point decision at Columbia.
To advance in the playoffs Loyola (MD) will likely need some more scoring to help out the defensive end of the floor which means at least something in the mid 60’s or higher. The Greyhounds feature a trio of double digit scorers in Tyler Hubbard, Eric Laster and Andre Walker who average between 10-11 points but they struggle to make shots consistently with all connecting at less then 39%. Cam Gregory and Franz Rassman combine for 15 points with seven and 4.6 rebounds on 51% and 46% shooting respectively so I would want this pair to put a few more shots and possibly break the ten point barrier.
The Holy Cross Crusaders closed the regular season at 4-2 to finish the Patriot League schedule at 8-10 with a 13-15 record overall. The Crusaders were outscored 67-66 which in reality wasn’t such a bad thing with opponents hitting shots at over 47%. The Crusaders only stepped up in competition a few times with their biggest win being a one point decision versus Harvard while also defeating top seed Bucknell. The bottom line for this team is they could beat of lose to anybody in the conference which makes this team a bit of a mystery.
The Crusaders featured a lone double digit scorer in Malcolm Miller at 14 points and five boards on 43.7% with Justin Burrell adding almost ten points but on only 37% marksmanship. Malachi Alexander seems like a player the Crusaders might lean on a bit more with his eight points and five rebounds on 43.5% that wouldn’t take much to crack double figures in scoring. Eric Green is another guy that has potential to step up at nearly seven points on 44% from the floor. Although Holy Cross has some balance half the guys are under 40% and need to do better to get the scoreboard close to 70 points.
The Greyhounds are 13-3 ATS in their last 16 games following a double digit loss at home. and 5-2 ATin their last 7 games after scoring less than 50 points in their previous game. Loyola (MD) are 2-5 ATS in their last 7 games vs. a team with a losing S.U. record and 2-6-1 ATS in their last 9 games overall. The Crusaders are 4-1 ATS in their last five games vs. a team with a losing SU record and 2-5 ATS in their last 7 home games vs. a team with a losing road record. Holy Cross are 2-6 ATS in their last 8 home games and 1-4 ATS in their last 5 vs. Patriot League. I think Holy Cross the better overall numbers so I lean to them…