MAAC foes will battle when the Siena Saints (4-11, 0-2 MAAC) take on the Niagara Purple Eagles (7-8, 0-2 MAAC) at Times Union Center. The Over/Under (O/U) for the game opened at 159.5 points with Siena set as a 1.5-point favorite. Action begins at 7 p.m. ET on Friday, January 5, 2018.
Niagara Purple Eagles at Siena Saints Free Preview
The Purple Eagles were blown out by the Rider Broncs in their last matchup, 99-76. Niagara’s Marvin Prochet put together a solid performance, leading both teams in scoring with 21 points on 7-for-11 shooting. Rider had an offensive rebounding percentage of 44.2 (above their season average of 32.9). Niagara, on the other hand, did a terrific job of getting to and converting from the charity stripe (24-30; 80.0 percent).
In the Saints last matchup, they were thoroughly outplayed by the Quinnipiac Bobcats, 71-70. With 19 points, six steals and five rebounds, Siena’s Roman Penn had a solid game. Quinnipiac had an offensive rebounding percentage of 41.9 (above their season average of 26.1). Siena, meanwhile, had an effective field goal percentage of 0.633 (above their season average of 0.481).
Niagara should be expected to protect the ball well in this contest. Niagara ranks 11th in the NCAA at avoiding errors (turnover percentage of 14.9 percent), while Siena forces the 35th-fewest turnovers (16.8 percent).
These two teams are complete opposites in terms of the O/U total. Games including Niagara have gone over 90.9 percent of the time, while Siena games have finished under 71.4 percent of the time. Looking at straight up (SU) and against the spread (ATS) records, the Purple Eagles have a sizable advantage. They are 7-8 SU and 5-6 ATS, while the Saints are 4-11 SU and 3-4 ATS.
Both teams have had a player trending in the right direction over their last five games. For the Purple Eagles, it’s been Prochet, who has averaged 13.0 points and 9.8 rebounds, while the Saints have gotten great contributions from Penn (12.2 points).
This is the first time these teams will battle this year. Each won one of the two games played against each other last season. The Saints won the last contest 76-70. Siena had a much better free throw rate (0.218 vs. 0.110). Niagara, meanwhile, had a much better turnover percentage (12.1 vs. 23.7).
Niagara Purple Eagles vs. Siena Saints Prediction
Predictions: SU Winner – Niagara, ATS Winner – Niagara, O/U – Over
- The Purple Eagles average 4.1 blocks per game, which ranks 71st in the nation. The Saints rank 83rd in blocks allowed per game (3.3).
- On the road, Niagara is 3-2 ATS with 5 overs and 0 unders.
- Siena is 1-2 ATS at home with 2 unders and 1 over.
- Siena ranks 116th in rebounds allowed per game (34.5) while Niagara ranks 255th (40.5).
- The Saints rank 111th in assists allowed per game (13.1) while the Purple Eagles rank 236th (17.3).
- Niagara ranks 12th in steals allowed per game (4.5) while Siena ranks 112th (6.6).
- Siena is 1-2 ATS with 3 unders in their last five games.
- Over their last five games, Niagara is 1-3 ATS with 3 overs and 1 under.
- The Saints have outscored opponents by an average of 3.0 points in their last five games. For the season, Siena has been defeated by an average of 7.6 points.
- During their last five games, the Purple Eagles have scored an average of 84.4 points per game (0.5 above their season average) and allowed an average of 88.4 points per game (0.2 below their season average).