The NIT showdown between the No. 25 Saint Mary’s Gaels (28-5) and the Southeastern Louisiana Lions (22-11) will take place at McKeon Pavilion. The game’s Over/Under (O/U) has been set at 141 points with Saint Mary’s opening as a 16-point favorite. Action starts at 10 p.m. ET on Tuesday, March 13, 2018, and it can be seen on ESPNU.
Southeastern Louisiana Lions vs. Saint Mary’s Gaels Odds Preview
In the Lions’ last outing, they fell to the Stephen F. Austin Lumberjacks, 59-55. Southeastern Louisiana’s Marlain Veal finished with 12 points, six rebounds and five assists in the contest. Stephen F. Austin held the Lions to an offensive rebounding percentage of 16.0 (below their season average of 31.4). Southeastern Louisiana, meanwhile, had a much better free throw rate (0.205 vs. 0.070).
The Gaels are hoping for a better outcome after their 85-72 loss to the BYU Cougars in their last outing. Jordan Ford led Saint Mary’s in scoring with 27 points on 10-for-18 shooting. BYU did an excellent job of making free throws (14-16; 87.5 percent). Saint Mary’s, on the other hand, had a much better offensive rebounding percentage (31.0 vs. 18.2).
Ball security could play a key role in this matchup. Saint Mary’s commits the 15th-fewest miscues in the nation (turnover percentage of 15.2 percent), while the gambling defense of Southeastern Louisiana forces the 34th-most (opponents’ turnover percentage of 21.6 percent).
Of Southeastern Louisiana’s 2 games with betting action, one have finished over the projected point total, while 20 of Saint Mary’s’ 29 games have finished under the projected point total. Looking at straight up (SU) and against the spread (ATS) records, the Gaels have a substantial advantage. They are 28-5 SU and 12-17 ATS, while the Lions are 22-11 SU and 2-0 ATS.
Southeastern Louisiana Lions vs. Saint Mary’s Gaels Betting Prediction
Pick: SU Winner – Saint Mary’s, ATS Winner – Southeastern Louisiana, O/U – Over
- The Lions rank 22nd in assists allowed per game (10.8) while the Gaels rank 66th (11.9).
- Saint Mary’s ranks first in rebounds allowed per game (27.8) while Southeastern Louisiana ranks 171st (35.2).
- The Lions rank 83rd in steals per game (6.7) while the Gaels rank 247th (4.3).
- Southeastern Louisiana ranks 179th in three pointers attempted per game (21.0) while Saint Mary’s ranks 242nd (19.1).
- The Gaels’ average margin of victory in their last five games has been 8.6, down from 12.5 for the season.
- During their last five games, the Lions have scored an average of 73.4 points per game (0.9 above their season average) and allowed an average of 64.2 points per game (4.5 below their season average).