Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Tonight's Previews and Predictions

Three games on tap this evening, and each becomes more important than the last. A look at the three games on tap, in a special edition of Wednesday night conference play in the Big Sky.

Sacramento State @ Portland State
This is a must win for the Hornets if they want to remain viable contenders to make the Big Sky tournament. Such is the hole they dug after starting 0-8. Portland State has to see an opening for third place. Currently Idaho State is 7-6, while Montana State likely is out of the running for third. With a win, it is right there for the taking for the Vikings. This should be a competitive game because the Hornets are still playing well, but the Viks will be tough at home with a lot at stake. PORTLAND STATE 75, SACRAMENTO STATE 70

Weber State @ Montana State
This was a tough game for Montana State even before the Xavier Blount Situation, now, it looks dire for the Bobcats. Weber State is playing well, and they are a tough matchup for the Bobcats. MSU is suddenly thin in the backcourt, which is not a good thing when you are facing Damian Lillard. I can't see MSU generating enough points or stops in this game. WEBER STATE 81, MONTANA STATE 66

Northern Colorado @ Eastern Washington
This is the biggest game of the night, as EWU leads UNC by half a game for the sixth seed, which of course is the final seed that qualifies for the Big Sky tournament. Northern Colorado played well this last week against Montana, and had a very nice comeback win over Montana State, but things could be a bit tougher on the road. EWU is one of the most athletic teams in the Big Sky, which tends to give the Bears a bit of trouble. Ironically, it could be an Eagle that would fit perfectly in the Northern Colorado offense that could be the difference, as Parker Kelly has been on a roll lately. EASTERN WASHINGTON 72, NORTHERN COLORADO 67

Any other predictions?

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  1. Adding to tonight's drama are the tiebreaking scenarios for the Big Sky. Head-to-head records are the first tiebreaker. A win for Eastern Washington assures them of a spot over UNC if the two teams end up tied. If Sac State enters that tie as well, the combined record is used. In that scenario you would EWU (3-1), SAC (2-2) and UNC (1-3). So EWU gets the spot.

    This is also big for Portland State as they have been swept by Weber State, Montana and Montana State. They have swept Idaho State and NAU, and could complete sweeps over EWU, UNC and Sac State over the last two weeks.

  2. Great stuff Bryan and thanks for that... I am not well versed at this point how the tiebreakers work, so that was great!

    The only thing about UNC/EWU is that UNC did win the first matchup (in a crazy game), so this would tie at 1-1 if EWU wins. But I do think it will be very difficult for UNC to recover if they lose tonight, especially considering their last two games - a daunting finish.

    Do-or-die time for UNC and Sac State... if both lose tonight, it will be tough to envision a top 6 different than what we have now (other than a mixing of the order)... if both win, suddenly things are extremely interesting!