Evansville Purple Aces (16-11 SU 14-9 ATS) at Northern Iowa Panthers (12-14 SU 7-14-1 ATS)
NCAAB: Tuesday, February 13, 2018 at 8:00 p.m. ET
After a solid three-game winning streak Evansville has lost two of their last three games and they are two games under .500 in MVC play. The Purple Aces are all about their defense, as they rank a legit 25th in the nation in points allowed, but only 311th in ppg. In losing two of their last three games they have given up 72 points and 75 points respectively and on the season they are only giving up an average of 65.2 ppg. A few games back at home Evansville played great D in beating Northern Iowa 570-49.
Northern Iowa has lost four of their last five games and they are tied with Valparaiso in the basement of the MVC. They are in the same boat as the Purple Aces ranking tied for 10th in the nation in points allowed and only 333rd in ppg.
Northern Iowa is 7-3 ATS in their last 10 home games facing Evansville.
Poor shooting, poor work on the glass
In their last game, Evansville was on the road where they lost to Missouri State 72-55 where they had a bad shooting game and did not rebound the rock well. In the game, the Purple Aces did force 13 turnovers, while they had nine, but they only shot 37.3% from the floor, allowed Missouri State to shoot 45.8%, and they gave up a whopping 17 offensive rebounds while only pulling down three. The Purple Aces were outscored by 13 points in the first half and Ryan Taylor (13 points) and Dru Smith (12 points) were the only players for the team that went for double figures. This duo leads Evansville in scoring led by Taylor, who is putting up an average of 21.4 ppg. Smith did not play in the recent win over Northern Iowa out with an injury and Taylor was the big star of the game going for 25 points on 10/17 shooting and Blake Simmons went for 15 points and had 15 rebounds. This season Evansville is 2-8 on the road.
Rebounding yes, shooting no
Northern Iowa was on the road in their last game where they lost to Drake 71-64 where they played well on the glass, but had a bad shooting game. They only shot 37.9% from the floor and 25.8% from 3-pt land and they lost even though they had three times as many offensive rebounds (15-5). The Panthers allowed Drake to shoot 47.9% from the floor and they had one more turnover in the game (11-10). Reserves Wyatt Lohaus (17 points) and Bennett Koch (11 points 11 rebounds) were the only two scorers for Northern Iowa in the game. Koch is the only player on the team that is averaging in double figures on the season, but three other players are averaging at least 9 ppg. In the earlier loss to Evansville Koch went for 19 points, but overall the Panthers were ice cold shooting the rock with a FG% of 31.3% and a 3-pt FG% of 23.1%. On the season Northern Iowa is 10-4 at home.
The Evansville Purple Aces are:
- 5-2 ATS in their last 7 games following a straight up loss
The Northern Iowa Panthers are:
- 7-19-1 ATS in their last 27 games overall
- 10-25 ATS in their last 35 games vs. a team with a winning straight up record
- 1-4 ATS in their last 5 vs. Missouri Valley
- 6-20-1 ATS in their last 27 games following a straight up loss
While Northern Iowa has covered the spread in four of their last five home games that trend will not continue. They struggled to shoot the pill in their last game and really did so in the recent road loss to Evansville. This game will be a low scoring affair and while the Panthers may get the win the Purple Aces will cover the spread in what will be a close game.