Montana vs. Eastern Washington - 3/16/19 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction
Eastern Washington at Montana
Saturday, March 16, 2019 at 7:00 PM (CenturyLink Arena)
Montana Grizzlies -6.5 -- Over/Under: 144
The Eastern Washington Eagles and Montana Grizzlies will square off at CenturyLink Arena this Saturday night in the Finals of the Big Sky Men’s Championship.
The 3-seed Eastern Washington Eagles defeated the 7-seed Southern Utah Thunderbirds by a 77-61 margin on Friday night and advance to the Big Sky Championship game for the 2nd consecutive season. Eastern Washington was outstanding on the defensive end against the high scoring Southern Utah offense and had no trouble securing the victory after taking a 39-21 halftime lead. Eastern Washington shot 47.4% from the field while holding Southern Utah to just 34.5% shooting from the field and 33.3% shooting from beyond the arc. Leading the way for the Eagles was Mason Peatling who had 20 points, 7 rebounds, 1 assist, 1 block, and a steal.
Coming into their match-up against Southern Utah, Eastern Washington was averaging 72.0 ppg on 42.5% shooting from the field. The Eagles were averaging 9.2 three-pointers per game on 34.9% shooting from beyond the arc. Offensively, Eastern Washington has been led by Mason Peatling (15.4 ppg, 7.6 rpg, 1.6 apg, 1.0 spg), Jesse Hunt (14.7 ppg, 8.8 rpg, 3.3 apg), Jacob Davidson (14.6 ppg, 3.0 rpg, 1.8 apg, 1.1 spg), and Tyler Kidd (9.7 ppg, 1.5 rpg, 3.1 apg, 1.1 spg).
Defensively, Eastern Washington was allowing their opponents to average 74.6 ppg on 45.4% shooting from the field. The Eagles have a rebound margin of -0.8 and a turnover margin of 0.1.
The top-seed Montana Grizzlies (25-8; 16-4) will look to become the Big Sky Champions for the 2nd consecutive season after defeating the Weber State Wildcats, 78-49, in the Semifinals on Friday night. Montana defeated Weber State in both of their regular season match-ups and had no trouble taking care of business against them in this one as Montana held a 66-33 lead midway through the 2nd half. Montana shot 47.5% from the field while holding Weber State to 31.5% shooting from the field and 23.8% shooting from beyond the arc. Leading the way for the Grizzlies was Ahmaad Rorie who had 28 points, 7 rebounds, and 6 assists.
Coming into their game against Weber State, Montana was averaging 76.9 ppg on 49.6% shooting from the field. The Grizzlies were averaging 8.2 three-pointers per game on 37.9% shooting from beyond the arc. Offensively, Montana has been led by Jamar Akoh (15.5 ppg, 8.7 rpg, 1.7 apg, 2.0 spg), Sayeed Pridgett (15.0 ppg, 5.1 rpg, 2.3 apg, 1.3 spg), Ahmaad Rorie (14.8 ppg, 3.9 rpg, 4.0 apg, 1.0 spg), and Michael Oguine (13.4 ppg, 5.3 rpg, 1.9 apg, 1.2 spg).
Defensively, Montana was allowing their opponents to average 69.0 ppg on 43.3% shooting from the field. The Grizzlies had a rebound margin of 2.7 and a turnover margin of 1.4.
The Eagles are 4-0 ATS in their last 4 games overall and 5-2 ATS in their last 7 games following an ATS win. The Grizzlies are 7-3-2 ATS in their last 12 games after allowing less than 50 points in their previous game, however, are just 4-12 ATS in their last 16 neutral site games.
Eastern Washington might have struggled in their non-conference schedule as they started the season with a 3-12 record, however the Eagles were able to turn things around in conference play and the offense has been really rolling as of late as the Eagles are averaging 81.2 ppg during their current 5-game winning streak. Montana came into this season as Big Sky favorites and didn’t disappoint as the Grizzlies won their regular season title for the 2nd consecutive season and come into this game ranked 67th in scoring offense, 8th in FG%, and 96th in scoring defense. Montana was able to defeat Eastern Washington in last year’s Big Sky Men’s Championship and as I think the Grizzlies defense will be able to give Eastern Washington some trouble, I’m taking Montana to cover this spread. Good Luck!