This Friday, there is an NCAAB matchup between the Missouri State Bears and the Xavier Musketeers. This will be the first meeting between these teams this season and it will take place at the Cintas Center.
Missouri State Looks For First Road WinThe Missouri State Bears have been pretty good up to this point in the season. The Bears have won two of their first three games including a 20 point victory against Cleveland State at home on Tuesday. In that game, Missouri State's defense was amazing as it only allowed 53 points while forcing the opposition to shoot just 31.6% from the floor and just 18.2% from the three-point line. Now, Missouri State has to travel to play its first road game of the season in a very hostile environment. If Missouri State plans on winning this game, its defense will need to continue playing at its current level for all 40 minutes.
Leading the Bears offensively is senior guard Keandre Cook who looked great this season. He is currently averaging a team-high 19.3 points per game along with 5.7 rebounds. He is also extremely efficient as he is shooting 56.3% from the floor and 52.9% from the three-point line. Now, he will look to continue shooting the ball with confidence against a solid basketball team on Friday.
Missouri State's most underrated player is senior forwardLamont Westwho has been solid so far this season. West spent four years with West Virginia before deciding to transfer to Missouri State during the offseason and it appears that the decision has paid off. He is currently averaging 10.0 points per game while shooting 47.8% from the floor and 37.5% from downtown. Now, he will look to help lead the Bears to an upset road victory in this game.
Xavier Looks To Remain UndefeatedThe Xavier Musketeers have looked amazing up to this point in the season. The Musketeers have won each of their first three games with two of those wins coming by at least 18 points. However, Xavier struggled a bit in its last game as it needed overtime to beat Missouri at home. In that game, Xavier's defense was amazing as it held Missouri to just 58 points on 33.3% shooting from the floor. Xavier's defense has been the main reason why it is still undefeated this season as it is only allowing 59.3 points per game. Now, it will look to carry the team to its fourth home victory of the season on Friday night.
Leading the Musketeers offensively is junior forward Naji Marshall who looked solid this season. He is currently averaging a team-high 18.0 points per game along with 7.3 rebounds and 4.7 assists. However, he has been extremely inefficient as he is shooting just 38.6% from the floor and 17.6% from the three-point line. Now, he will look to find his shooting stroke against an underrated defense at home.
Xavier's most underrated player is junior guard Paul Scruggswho has been consistent so far this season. He is currently averaging 12.0 points per game while shooting 45.5% from the floor and 100.0% from the free throw line. In addition, he has also been extremely active on the defensive side of the ball as he is averaging a team-high 2.0 steals.
Trends found on Covers.com, are:
- Bears are 1-7 ATS in their last 8 games overall.
- Musketeers are 10-3 ATS in their last 13 games vs. a team with a winning straight up record.
- Musketeers are 6-2 ATS in their last 8 games vs. a team with a winning % above .600.