Tip-off: Thursday, 6PM @ Leavey
Line: Torvik- Broncos -12, 86% win probability; ESPN- 90% win probability, no line yet.
9-10 overall, 2-5 in the WCC. The Lions were a popular media pick in the offseason and preseason to be on the ascent and maybe challenge for a top 4 spot in the WCC but it has been an uneven season for the Lions so far and they are now struggling in league play. Things aren’t likely to turn around this season for the Lions as talented 6-8 wing Dameane Douglas went down with a season ending injury two weeks ago; the 3rd season in a row Douglas has missed half the season or more. While Eli Scott may be their most valuable player, Douglas was their most talented player, a tall, do-it-all wing with as much potential as Jalen Williams. Rotation guy and past part-time starter, forward Ivan Alipiev has also been out all season.
LMU has an odd roster and rotation, 6-6, wide bodied forwards Eli Scott and Keli Leaupepe are their tallest starters and 6-8 transfer forward Alex Merkviladze is their only big off the bench but only plays 15mins / game. The rest of their rotation is guard and wing heavy.
Eli Scott still does everything for them leading with 16pts, 7 pts and 4 assists /game. Guard Joe Quintana is scoring 12pts a game and is one of the top 3pt threats in the league with nearly 3 made 3’s /game and shooting 40%. Beyond those two, no one else is lighting up the scoreboard on a regular basis.
As a team, looking at the advance metrics, LMU is mediocre at best in most categories and aren’t particularly great at anything.
Prediction: Broncos handle the down on their luck Lions, 81-69.
Broncos need to hold serve and continue to take care of business vs. the bottom of the WCC.
to be clear, I believe the game is Thursday, February 3rd.
Correct, forgot to include that, just edited.
Going to San Diego next gives me more pause than this one… Let’s go broncos.
LMU gave Gonzaga a game for ten minutes. These are the games we have had trouble with in the past. Looking for a win as this is the best Bronco team I can remember for a long time. I am very disappointed in the crowd as we only had 680 against UOP. USF and St Marys get 3,000 against us and we can’t get 1,500 to a game (except Stanford where it was still a paltry 2,000). This team deserves more fan support. It would help win close games.
I never underestimate Eli Scott. That guy can be an absolute nightmare with his power forward size and guard skills. Especially with our longer, lighter players, his size and momentum could be an issue. I know Jalen usually gets the prime defensive assignment, but I wonder if we put Keshawn on Scott given Keshawn’s strength and toughness with the help defender cheating over a bit when Scott has the ball.
This is what makes me think even Braun might have to be up for the task
USF is on a roll and the game was on a Saturday night.
No matter what night it is or how good or bad SMC is, there is nothing else to do in Moraga, so the drones show up.
UOP game was a Monday night and, despite the BYU win, the usual drubbing by the Zags and close loss at USF combined with the set of non-conference losses has fans thinking “same-ol, same ol”.
Personally, I had just come off a 10-day “mancation” and could not justify peeling away from the fam for the UOP game. Was able to watch out of the corner of my eye at home. Had to turn it off during halftime and didn’t get back in time to see the 20 point run. So bummed.
I’ll be there tomorrow. My nephew is a Lion. I need some bragging rights.
This Bronco squad has some very good energy right now. I would like to see them drop 90 on LMU tonight!
Getting 2 wins this week is paramount. LMU is simply not a good team. They have trouble with nearly all aspects of the game. Just get out and go. SCU has so much more talent and depth than LMU that the only way the Lions stand a prayer is to slow the game and try and make it a shoving match with Scott and Leiupepe against the world. Push the pace and SCU coasts to victory. SCU 83 LMU 66
Current Line is SCU -9, O/U 147.5
My Prediction: SCU 82 - 71 LMU
As Patty notes, the Eli Scott matchup will be interesting. Vrankic has typically had the assignment with mixed to mediocre results.
Amongst our starters, Keyshawn does probably match Scott the best but then that means one of Vrankic or Braun will have to match up on a guard or wing which could be problematic (the other would guard Leaupepe).
Probably best to match up Vrankic or Braun on Scott, then bring plenty of help to force Scott to give up the ball. And the good news with Scott is he’s a terrible 3pt shooter…24% for his career, 19% this year; no reason to chase him out to the 3pt line.
And this is yet another game where some zone would be beneficial, at least as a Plan B as LMU is a terrible 3pt shooting team at 32%, about the bottom quartile in the country. Quintana is their only significant 3pt threat, remove him from the equation and their team 3pt % drops to ~28%. Zone would make it easy to collapse on Scott and keep him from doing much damage. But alas, there’s about a 2% chance we play any zone.
We’ll find out shortly how we decide to defend Scott.
Carlos Stewart is playing so well. Should only come off the court to catch his breath.
Braun is dong a good job on Scott for the most part. If Scott wants to shoot long 2s all night then he can feel free to do so.
Stewart played a perfect 1st half and Justice had some really good moments as well.
Carlos Stewart is simply AMAZING… He should start next year for sure. That And-1 had me off my seat!
Awesome second half from Pipes.
Scott wants no piece of Braun and just settles for long shots. Strange. Last year, Scott destroyed us down low.
Glad that you have bragging rights and saw a nice win. You and your nephew added 2 of the 36 extra fans for tonight’s game. Still well below 1,000 and student lack of interest at this point is insulting. Local alumni also must be to busy to bother. I think this makes it very tough on the team but I admire their achievements this year. I come from another era where we looked forward to going to the games be it basketball, baseball or at the time football……
Pats on the back for Braun locking down Scott. Stewart with 12 points in 16 min… release the beast!
Please please beat Usd on Saturday to setup a huge week against smc and usf.