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Mike's First Conference Tournament Play Selections

By: Point Shaver Handzelek
Date: Mar 2, 2023
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With the odds feed down, here's 3 of my official plays for in today's conference tournament. PLAY #1: I don't think much of the depth for the 5-26 SU Evansville Purple Aces here! Now it's for real & it's win or go home in this Missouri Valley Tournament tilt. No, the Hick from French Lick (Larry Bird) isn't there as he flew the coop back in 79' but not before ISU finished @ 33-1. Even though they've only hit the 20-win mark in 5 of their last 44 seasons, this season they're 20-11 SU & it has been promising under sophomore HC Josh Schertz. They beat David "Always A Ball of Energy" Ragland's Evansville squad earlier on the road @ the Ford Center 83-65 & I don't see that gap closing too much on a neutral floor against a team with all 5 starters back from last season. Courvoisier McCauley is coming on with a head of steam leading the way with 16.4 PPG while Cooper Neese rounds out an excellent backcourt pitching in 10.6 PPG. Center Robbie Avila (10.1 PPG) & Cameron Henry (10 PPG) give this team both substance & balance. Let's go to Enterprise Center in St. Louis, MO to play the INDIANA STATE SYCAMORES laying it all on the ML to advance. PLAY #2: We're move to the Patriot League Tournament where the 23-8 SU Colgate Raiders won both meeting with the 13-19 SU Loyola, MD Greyhounds winning 101-67 on the road @ Reitz Arena in Baltimore while also taking care of business 76-63 @ tonight's venue in Hamilton, NY. Fifth-year senior Tucker Richardson is Colgate's catalyst averaging 13.3 PPG & is joined by 3 other 5th-year seniors in Keegan Records (12.5 PPG), Oliver Lynch-Daniels (11.8 PPG) & Ryan Moffatt (10.1 PPG) who average in double-digits. Rounding off an excellent starting five is multi-sport phenom & just a freshman Braeden Smith (11.6 PPG) scored 1,000 pts for Washington state traditional power, the Seattle Prep HS team & led them to a 3rd-place finish in the state tournament. The 6'0" Smith was also a dual threat QB for the football team. With this team loaded with depth, look for them to march on as we lay the lumber again grabbing the Maroon & Gray COLGATE RAIDERS on the ML @ Cotterell Court. PLAY #3: We're zeroing in on the Atlantic Sun Tournament for my final selection as in earlier head-to-head meetings this season, both teams won @ home with 20-12 SU Eastern Kentucky winning 62-59 @ McBrayer Arena & 25-7 SU Liberty getting it done 83-73. Liberty is fresh off winning their tournament opener 76-56 over Bellarmine while the Colonels of EKU whacked North Alabama 73-48 two nights ago. I like HC Ritchie McKay & the Flames with 4 solid starters back this season while looking to avenge a loss to the Jacksonville State Gamecocks in the tournament finals last year. The biggest difference & best player on the floor is 6th-year senior guard Darius McGhee. He's averaging 29 PPG in the post-season connecting on 9 FG's in 14 attempts from beyond the arc. Look for their most-versatile player, 6'7" power forward Kyle Rode to pitch 20 combined (points+rebounds+assists) in getting the Flames to advance. Let's go to Liberty Arena in Lynchburg, VA to lay the lumber with the LIBERTY FLAMES on the ML! 3-0 FOR CONFERENCE TOURNAMENTS Mike Handzelek's CBB Overall Record: 6-0 for 100%

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