Evansville Purple Aces vs. Tennessee-Martin Skyhawks-CIT Tournament - 3/31/15 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction
Tennessee-Martin Skyhawks (21-12) at Evansville Purple Aces (22-12)
College Basketball: Tuesday, March 31, 2015 at 7:00 pm (Ford Center)
The Line: Evansville Purple Aces -6.5 -- Over/Under: See the Latest Odds
The Tennessee-Martin Skyhawks visit the Ford Center to challenge the Evansville Purple Aces in a CBI semifinal.
The Tennessee-Martin Skyhawks have generally gotten good efforts at both ends of the floor to win games and that has been the trend in the CBI thus far. The Skyhawks defeated Ohio Valley rival the Eastern Kentucky Colonels 70-69 in the quarterfinals as they fought off a three point assault from EKY. The Colonels hit shots at nearly 45% with a 15-39 mark from distance. The 50% shooting Skyhawks overcame 17 turnovers with nine bombs of their own and five more free throws to squeeze out the win. Twymond Howard led four double digit scorers with a contest high 23 points and seven boards on 9-13 from the floor while Marshun Newell added 16 points and eight pulls. Alex Anderson was next in line with 14 points followed by an eleven point, seven board and eight assist effort from Javier Martinez.
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The Evansville Purple Aces are similar to their counterparts in that they need both ends of the floor to perform well to have their best chance of success although this is a team known more fore their offensive ability. It was all offense in their 89-82 victory versus Louisiana-Lafayette at the Cajundome in the quarterfinals. The Purple Aces were up seven at the intermission and traded baskets the rest of the way with nearly 57% shooting adding up to six more buckets against the 41% accuracy of the Ragin’ Cajuns who stayed within the realm of competiveness with five more free throws. DJ Balentine was the offensive star of the game as he exploded for a game high 35 points on 11-18 from the floor along with five helpers while Jaylon Moore scored 12. Adam Wing and Mislav Brzoja combined for 21 points with Brzoja hauling in nine rebounds.
The numbers from both teams are more similar then different although the Purple Aces have done their damage against some higher rated competition seeing they are out of the Missouri Valley. The Ohio Valley had some strong teams with Tennessee-Martin challenging but on the outside looking in at the championship when all was said and done. The Skyhawks are improved from years past and might be flying under the radar as they have the ability to compete with Evansville…