Morgan State Bears (13-18) at North Carolina Central Eagles (17-15)
College Basketball: Friday, March 9, 2018 at 8:00 pm (Norfolk Scope Arena)
The Line: North Carolina Central Eagles -1 -- Over/Under:137 Click to Get Latest Betting Odds
The Morgan State Bears and North Carolina Central Eagles will square off at Norfolk Scope Arena this Friday night in the semifinals of the MEAC Men’s Tournament.
The 7-seed Morgan State Bears improved to 13-18 (7-9 MEAC) on the season after upsetting the 2-seed Bethune-Cookman Wildcats, 78-77, this past Wednesday night in the quarterfinals of the MEAC Men’s Tournament. Morgan State quickly fought back from an 11-point halftime deficit to make it a game in the 2nd half and took the lead for good after the Bears Tiwian Kendley hit two-FT’s with just under 8 seconds left in regulation. Morgan State held Bethune-Cookman to just 38.1% from the field and 5.0% (1-20) from beyond the arc in the win. Leading the way for the Bears was Tiwian Kendley who had 31 points, 5 rebounds, 1 assist, 4 steals, and 2 blocks. On the season, Morgan State is averaging 71.1 ppg on 41.9% shooting from the field. The Bears are averaging 5.0 three-pointers per game on 33.7% shooting from beyond the arc. Offensively, Morgan State has been led by Tiwian Kendley (25.5 ppg, 4.1 rpg, 2.1 apg, 2.0 spg), Phillip Carr (13.9 ppg, 9.5 rpg, 1.2 apg), Martez Cameron (8.4 ppg, 2.8 rpg, 4.3 apg, 1.5 spg), and Stanley Davis (7.3 ppg, 2.9 rpg, 1.6 apg). Defensively, Morgan State is allowing their opponents to average 72.9 ppg on 44.2% shooting from the field. The Bears have a rebound margin of 2.3 and a turnover margin of 0.8.
The 6-seed North Carolina Central Eagles improved to 17-15 (9-7 MEAC) on the season after upsetting the 3-seed Savannah State Tigers, 58-56, last night in the quarterfinals of the MEAC Men’s Tournament. North Carolina Central trailed by a 34-30 margin at halftime however, fought back to tie the game up at 42-all midway through the 2nd half and took the lead for good after an 8-0 Eagles run gave North Carolina Central a 56-50 lead with 5:02 left in regulation. North Carolina Central held Savannah State to just 28.1% shooting from the field and 25.0% (8-32) shooting from beyond the arc in the win. Leading the way for the Eagles was Raasean Davis who had 16 points and 20 rebounds. On the season, North Carolina Central is averaging 73.1 ppg on 46.7% shooting from the field. The Eagles are averaging 6.3 three-pointers per game on 34.3% shooting from beyond the arc. Offensively, North Carolina Central has been led by Raasean Davis (15.0 ppg, 7.5 rpg, 1.0 bpg), Pablo Rivas (11.1 ppg, 6.9 rpg, 1.0 apg, 1.1 bpg), Jordan Perkins (8.5 ppg, 3.0 rpg, 5.4 apg), and Larry McKnight Jr. (6.6 ppg, 2.5 rpg). Defensively, North Carolina Central is allowing their opponents to average 70.1 ppg on 42.2% shooting from the field. The Eagles have a rebound margin of 4.5 and a turnover margin of -2.1.
Bears are 3-0-1 ATS in their last 4 games following an ATS win and 4-1-1 ATS in their last 6 games following a straight up win. The Eagles are 7-1 ATS in their last 8 games vs. MEAC opponents and 9-2 ATS in their last 11 games overall.
North Carolina Central won the only matchup they had against Morgan State this season as they won by a 77-63 margin at home in mid-January.
Morgan State has won 3 of their last 4 games however, it’s been a struggle offensively for the Bears this season as Morgan State ranks just 248th in scoring offense and 310th in FG%. North Carolina Central has won three straight games and has been solid defensively this season as the Eagles ranks T-115th in scoring defense, 75th in defensive FG%, and 51st in rebound margin. Morgan State has had a nice run however, North Carolina Central is just the better teams on both ends of the court and I think the Eagles will do enough to cover this small spread.