Pacific vs. UC Irvine - 12/29/18 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction

Pacific vs. UC Irvine - 12/29/18 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction Photo by Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports

UC Irvine Anteaters (11-3) at Pacific Tigers (9-5)

College Basketball: Saturday, December 29, 2018 at 10:00 pm (Spanos Center)

The Line: Pacific Tigers +4 -- Over/Under: 133 Click to Get Latest Betting Odds

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The UC Irvine Anteaters will travel to the Alex G. Spanos Center to take on the Pacific Tigers this Saturday night in College Basketball action.

The UC Irvine Anteaters had their 4-game winning streak snapped and dropped to 11-3 on the season after being defeated by the Butler Bulldogs, 71-54, on December 21st. UC Irvine had no answers on the offensive end against the Butler defense and couldn’t fight back after trailing by a 41-17 margin at halftime. UC Irvine shot just 35.3% from the field and 11.8% from beyond the arc in the loss. Leading the way for the Anteaters was Elston Jones who had 7 points, 6 rebounds, 1 assist, 1 block, and a steal.

On the season, UC Irvine is averaging 69.0 ppg on 43.2% shooting from the field. The Anteaters are averaging 6.4 three-pointers per game on 34.5% shooting from beyond the arc. Offensively, UC Irvine has been led by Max Hazzard (10.1 ppg, 1.6 rpg, 1.7 apg), Evan Leonard (8.4 ppg, 2.3 rpg, 1.6 spg), Collin Welp (8.1 ppg, 4.1 rpg, 1.0 apg), and John Edgar Jr. (7.9 ppg, 3.4 rpg).

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Defensively, UC Irvine is holding their opponents to an average of 62.4 ppg on 37.9% shooting from the field. The Anteaters have a rebound margin of 5.6 and a turnover margin of 0.1.

The Pacific Tigers had their 4-game winning streak snapped and dropped to 9-5 on the season after being defeated by the Boise State Broncos, 83-71, this past Saturday. Pacific trailed by just a 39-35 margin at halftime however, couldn’t fight back after the Broncos took a 77-64 lead with 3:03 left in regulation. Pacific allowed Boise State to shoot 51.9% from the field and 35.3% from beyond the arc in the loss. Leading the way for the Tigers was Jahlil Tripp who had 13 points, 4 rebounds, 2 assists, and a steal.

On the season, Pacific is averaging 74.8 ppg on 45.7% shooting from the field. The Tigers are averaging 6.8 three-pointers per game on 34.9% shooting from beyond the arc. Offensively, Pacific has been led by Roberto Gallinat (14.2 ppg, 2.9 rpg), Lafayette Dorsey (13.1 ppg, 2.8 rpg, 1.2 apg), Anthony Townes (11.1 ppg, 6.0 rpg), Jahlil Tripp (10.6 ppg, 6.5 rpg, 3.0 apg, 1.7 spg).

Defensively, Pacific is allowing their opponents to average 72.6 ppg on 46.6% shooting from the field. The Tigers have a rebound margin of 4.1 and a turnover margin of -0.4.

The Anteaters are 10-2 ATS in their last 12 road games and 5-1 ATS in their last 6 games vs. WCC opponents. The Tigers are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 home games vs. a team with a winning road record and 11-5 ATS in their last 16 home games.

UC Irvine can struggle putting points on the board as they rank just 287th in scoring offense, however, the Anteaters have still been successful this season as their defense has been outstanding and currently ranks 28th in scoring defense and 14th in defensive FG%. Pacific is more of a balanced team that might not blow you away in any one category however, is solid on both ends of the court and has done a decent job on the boards this season. Pacific has played well at home this season, however, UC Irvine has been more impressive this season with wins against both Saint Mary’s & Montana and I think the Anteaters will rebound from their loss against Butler with a convincing victory of Pacific. Take UC Irvine to cover this small road spread.

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Brett’s Pick UC Irvine Anteaters -4

The pick in this article is the opinion of the writer, not a Sports Chat Place site consensus.

Mitch's Take...

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