After some impressive wins during non-conference play, the Panthers have struggled during the Missouri Valley season. Northern Iowa defeated SMU, North Carolina State, UNLV, and UT Arlington during non-conference play, but the team comes in with 4-10 league record.
Purple Aces struggling on offense
Evansville lost on the road to Missouri State 72-55 on Saturday afternoon. Ryan Taylor scored 13 points and Dru Smith added 11 in the loss. The Purple Aces never led from the opening tip until the final buzzer and were out-rebounded 45-22 on the night.
Evansville comes in scoring just 95.6 points per 100 possessions (9th in the MVC) during Missouri Valley Conference play. The Purple Aces don’t take a lot of three-point shots, but when they do, they tend to go in. Marty Simmons’ squad has taken only 25.7 percent of their total field goal attempts from beyond the arc (10th in the MVC) through 14 conference games, but the Purple Aces have shot 38.4 percent from three-point range (2nd in the MVC) in those contests.
Evansville sports the best free throw rate in the conference. They own a free throw rate of 38.2 percent and shoot 76.7 from the charity stripe as a team (2nd in the MVC).
However, the Purple Aces are turning the ball over on 21.0 percent of their offensive possessions (8th in the MVC) and shooting just 44.8 percent from two-point range (10th in the MVC) so far during conference play.
Defensively, they have allowed MVC opponents to score just 96.8 points per 100 possessions so far this season (2nd in the MVC). Missouri Valley teams have turned the ball over on 22.6 percent of their possessions (1st in the MVC) and shot just 47.9 percent from inside the arc (3rd in the MVC) against the Purple Aces’ defense this year.
Panthers lose for fourth time in five games
The Panthers lost for the fourth time in five games on Saturday falling on the road to Drake 71-64. Wyatt Lohaus scored a team-high 17 points off of the bench, connecting on 4 of his 8 three-pointers in the loss. Bennett Koch added 11 points, but no other Panthers’ player scored in double-figures, as Northern Iowa trailed from the opening tip until the final buzzer in defeat.
Ben Jacobson’s team comes in scoring 96.4 point per 100 possessions during conference play (8th in the MVC), while allowing 102.8 points per 100 possessions on the defensive end of the floor (9th in the MVC).
The Panthers are turning the ball over on just 18.1 percent of their offensive possessions (2nd in the MVC), however, the team owns an effective field goal percentage of just 47.1 percent (10th in the MVC) during league play.
Opposing teams have torched the Panthers from beyond the arc this season. Missouri Valley opponents sport a three-point percentage of 40.2 percent against the Panthers’ defense (10th in the MVC) so far this year.
- Purple Aces are 5-2 ATS in their last 7 games following a straight up loss.
- Panthers are 6-20-1 ATS in their last 27 games following a straight up loss.
- Panthers are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 vs. Missouri Valley.
The Panthers have struggled since mid-December, losing 12 of their last 15 games. Evansville has been coming on strong since the end of January and the team has ramped things up on the defensive end during conference play. The McLeod Center isn’t an easy place to come away with a win, but I’m leaning towards the Purple Aces covering the spread on the road in the MVC matchup on Tuesday night.